An article on the news this morning drew attention to the selling of moa bones on sites such as TradeMe. I thought it was an excellent truly New Zealand example of the leave no trace principle of “Leave what you find”.
“As soon as there’s a trade, there’s an incentive to start illegally collecting them, chopping up the bones cause you get more money that way,” said museum curator Mike Dickison.
TradeMe argues that the trade is not actually illegal right now, and if they removed them from their site, they would pop up and be listed somewhere else.
Check out the article and see what you think…
NewsHub: Conservationists want the sale of moa bones banned
Just for the record, the right action to take if you find moa bones is to leave them where they are and contact your local museum.
As a caver I also get really excited when I come across moa or other animal bones in caves. I think cavers care about the bones and want to do the right thing, but sometimes moving the bones can be harmful. Neil Silverwood tells of someone moving bones out of a stream and onto a ledge to preserve them. That simple and commonsense act meant the bones will decay many times faster.
Thanks for raising this one 🙂