The Zealandia Drowning Debate

The Zealandia Drowning Debate

Did New Zealand Sink Beneath the Waves?

Did the entire New Zealand land mass sink beneath the waves 23 million years ago?

Many biologists reject the idea and insist that our native terrestrial fauna can be explained only by the continuous existence of land. But many geologists are now asserting that there is no longer any convincing geological evidence that the New Zealand section of Zealandia remained above the sea’s surface. But if Zealandia did sink completely beneath the waves 23 million years ago – where did our distinctive ancient flora and fauna such as the tuatara and our tree ferns come from?

This BWB Text is a provocative treatment of the ‘Drowning Zealandia’ scientific controversy by geologist Hamish Campbell.

What are BWB Texts?

BWB Texts offer a new form of reading for New Zealanders. Commissioned as short digital-first works, BWB Texts unlock diverse stories, insights and analysis from the best of our past, present and future New Zealand writing.

Available in ebook formats from booksellers and using the ‘Buy’ buttons on this page. For more information on these purchase options please visit our Sales FAQs page or contact us.

Ebook publication:
Pages: 48
RRP: $4.99
ISTC: A0220130000060E4
DOI: 10.7810/9781927131961

Search inside


‘The author has a gift for telling stories that keep your attention even when he delves into detailed scientific debate … as entertaining to read for a geologist as well as for the general public interested in New Zealand’s natural history’, K Bassett, Department of Geological Sciences, University of Canterbury, in the New Zealand Journal of Geology and Geophysics

‘A clear and engaging presentation of a scientific debate that suits the electronic format’, Rebecca Priestley, The New Zealand Listener