top of page

Our Objectives


The objectives of our group are to foster links with the public and similar groups both in New Zealand and overseas;
to support stewardship of Māui and Hector’s dolphins, to improve their health and population status, through awareness, public education and greater understanding, working with the public, and similar groups in New Zealand and overseas. 


Project 1: Awareness.


Māui and Hector’s Dolphin Defenders work across New Zealand to raise awareness of our lovely wee dolphins found only here, but seriously threatened with extinction. We have a range of resources available to help raise awareness and to promote appreciation and knowledge of these beautiful little special ocean dwellers. We encourage the celebration of our dolphins through art. We work with other groups as well as scientists, to ensure we are using the best information available and supporting the work of others to understand the status of our dolphins and to improve their chances of recovery. 

© Rob Pine and the New Zealand Whale and Dolphin Trust


Project 2: Education.


We visit and talk to schools and community groups, providing presentations and information so people are better informed about where our New Zealand dolphin can be found and what their risks are. We resource and encourage people of all ages to become Dolphin Defenders. We also organise and take part in public ocean focused events making sure our dolphins are on the radar. If you would like some of our Dolphin Defenders to speak to your group or school, or would like some brochures or other information please let us know.

© Rob Pine and the New Zealand Whale and Dolphin Trust


© Rob Pine and the New Zealand Whale and Dolphin Trust

Project 3: Action!


Our group works with politicians, councils, scientists and other organisations, spreading the word and working for change. We write submissions and lobby government for better protection. This includes writing to the Animal Welfare Act review, District Plans and by-laws, and Government submission processes. Where necessary we organise and take part in marches and protests. We encourage people to avoid eating fish caught using indiscriminate fishing methods such as gill-netting. Most of the fish in your local fish and chip shop is caught using methods that result in the by-catch of dolphins, sharks and birds. Send a message to the fishing companies that endanger Māui & Hector's dolphins - don't buy it!


We have also been instrumental in getting interpretation signs featuring Māui Dolphins along the West Coast, from where the dolphins can be seen, and install art in coastal communities. If there's a spot at a beach near you that could do with some art or interpretation, please let us know and we will try to help bring it to fruition.


bottom of page