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New Zealand Waxeye


It is an unfortunate fact of life that in order to conserve a species in the wild it is at times necessary to re-introduce individuals to wild populations either from relocation or captive breeding programmes.

Reintroduction of a species into its native habitat is always a complex procedure. Many captive breeding programmes are fatally flawed in that they seem to have the captive breeding as the endpoint of the conservation effort rather than just one stage.

All captive breeding programmes must have the release of individuals back into the wild as their ultimate goal and all effort during the captive breeding phase must geared towards this.

The captive breeding, when determined to be beneficial, on a scientific basis for determination, is best undertaken at purpose built breeding centres located near or adjacent to the species natural habitat.

Below are the IUCN/SSC Guidelines which give a basic outline of the processes which need to be incorporated into any ex-situ breeding/re-introduction programme.


  • Captive Management Policy
    A Department of Conservation policy guide to holding protected wildlife in captivity.

  • IUCN/SSC Re-introduction Specialist Group (RSG)
    The RSG was founded in 1988 to combat the ongoing and massive loss of biodiversity by using re-introductions as a responsible tool for the management and restoration of biodiversity through actively developing and promoting sound inter-disciplinary scientific information, policy, and practice to establish viable wild populations in their natural habitats.

    RSG Resource CD

    The RSG has produced a resource CD which contains:

    • RSG newsletters (22 issues),

    • RSG Guidelines, SSC and other conservation policies and reports

    • Re-introduction Practitioners Directory 1998, RSG Bibliography, RSG and SSC Strategic Plans.


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