Rabbits and Possums in New Zealand


Written by popular author Invercargill naturalist, historian and teacher Lloyd Esler, this book tells of the introduction of rabbits and possums into New Zealand, c1838, and the consequences of that action. We are familiar with the rabbit as the sleek, grey shape that scarpers ahead of us as we cross a paddock, white tail up, before disappearing into cover, or the casualty on a Central Otago road – a puff of discoloration on the bitumen. We know the hare, too, as the gingery and long-limbed creature, loping through the tussock and pausing momentarily to check that there is enough distance between him and us. The possum we hear more than we see. The branches rustle on a still night and there is a thump as he drops to the ground and scuttles away. An unsatisfactory glimpse leaves us unsure if he was grey or black but we are pleased with the departure. For much of our history man, rabbit and possum have been both friends and foes. Foes in the paddock and in the orchard and friends in the skinning shed. We have forgotten much of the story – this is it.

192 PAGES • 240x170mm

$20.00 plus postage

– or for $100 you can purchase all eight of Lloyd Esler’s publications, including a free NZ bird identifying folding card, post free or drop-off in Invercargill – Omaui and the New River Estuary; Flax and the Flax Industry in the South; Southland Book of Records; Invercargill 150 Years; Whaling and Sealing in Southern New Zealand; Early Days in Foveaux Strait; Rabbits and Possums in New Zealand; and Jack the Whaleboy.


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