When New Zealand broke away from the continent of Gondwana its unique birds, fish, reptiles, insects and plants developed and evolved in isolation. Without humans these living things still faced major challenges to their survival but much survived intact.
The first wave of Polynesian settlers doomed the moa, other birds and large areas of forest. European settlement brought new animals, plants and birds that transformed the country's biodiversity and landscape. Later chapters of this book look at the history of government attempts to poison pests, and the "predator-free" campaign, which the authors believe to be deeply flawed.