Advertisement

A Political Ecology of the Yellow-eyed Penguin in Southern New Zealand: A Conceptual and Theoretical Approach

  • Eric J. SheltonEmail author
  • Hazel Tucker
  • Jundan (Jasmine) Zhang
Chapter
Part of the Geoheritage, Geoparks and Geotourism book series (GGAG)

Abstract

Here, we engage with the political and ecological story of the yellow-eyed penguin (Megadyptes antipodes), a major tourist attraction, during four years of dramatically declining numbers of breeding pairs (New Zealand Department of Conservation in Unpublished census of yellow-eyed penguin breeding pairs 2015–16, 2016). One site, Long Point, is useful for presenting the possibilities of thematic integration since, using the principles of reintroduction biology (Seddon et al. in Conserv Biol 21(2):303–312, 2007; Armstrong and Seddon in Trends Ecol Evol 23:20–25, 2008), it is being used specifically to produce habitat for seabirds, rather than the more traditional restoration ecology approach. Also, the demands of tourism, for example to show respect through product offering (Zhang and Shelton in Tourism Anal 20(3):343–353, 2015) are, from the outset, being reinterpreted and integrated into the design and management of the site. Political ecology of tourism (Mostafanezhad et al. in Political ecology of tourism: communities, power and the environment. Routledge, London, pp 1–22, 2016) potentially is a fruitful analytic tool for formulating such thematic integration of ‘wildlife tourism’, ‘applied ecology’, and ‘environmental education and interpretation’. Political ecology emerged as a critique of an allegedly apolitical cultural ecology and ecological anthropology, and illustrates the unavoidable entanglement of political economy with ecological concerns (Zimmerer in Prog Hum Geogr 32(1):63–78, 2006). Also, political ecology has been described as ‘an urgent kind of argument or text … that examines winners or losers, is narrating using dialectics, begins and/or ends in a contradiction, and surveys both the status of nature and stories about the status of nature’ (Robbins in Political ecology: a critical introduction. Wiley-Blackwell, New York, 2004, p. viii). Relevant examples of such narratives include Shelton and Tucker’s (Tourism Rev Int 11(3):205–212, 2008, p. 198) text that constituted ‘the restoration narrative … central to the long-term viability of tourism in New Zealand because environmental preservation, conservation and restoration facilitate the continuation, and possible expansion, of nature-based tourism’ and Reis and Shelton’s (Tourism Anal 16(3):375–384, 2011, p. i) demonstration that ‘nature-based tourism activities are highly modulated by how Nature has been constructed in modern Western societies.’ It is this textual, discursive approach that differentiates political ecology from other approaches to issues surrounding ‘natural area tourism’, for example, the impacts approach of Newsome et al. (Natural Area Tourism: Ecology, impacts and management. Channel View Publications, Bristol, 2013).

Keywords

Political ecology Wildlife tourism Conservation Yellow-eyed penguin Reintroduction biology 

References

  1. Anderson A (1998) The welcome of strangers: an ethnohistory of southern Maori A.D. 1650–1850. University of Otago Press, DunedinGoogle Scholar
  2. Armstrong D, Seddon P (2008) Directions in reintroduction biology. Trends Ecol Evol 23:20–25CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Blaikie P, Brookfield H (1987) Land degradation and society. Methuen, New YorkGoogle Scholar
  4. Brockington D, Duffy R, Igoe J (2008) Nature unbound: conservation, capitalism and the future of protected areas. Earthscan, LondonGoogle Scholar
  5. Brundtland Commission (1987) Report for the world commission on environment and development. Geneva, United NationsGoogle Scholar
  6. Callicott J (2008) The implications of the ‘shifting paradigm’ in ecology for paradigm shifts in the philosophy of conservation. In: Nelson M, Callicott JB (eds) The wilderness debate rages on: continuing the great new wilderness debate. The University of Georgia Press, Athens, pp 571–600Google Scholar
  7. Castree N (1995) The nature of produced nature: materiality and knowledge construction in marxism. Antipode 27(1):12–48CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Christie J (2014) Adapting to a changing climate: a proposed framework for the conservation of terrestrial native biodiversity in New Zealand. New Zealand Department of Conservation, WellingtonGoogle Scholar
  9. Church I (2008) Gaining a Foothold: historical records of Otago’s Eastern Coast 1770–1839. Heritage Books, DunedinGoogle Scholar
  10. Collins B (2004) The wreck of the manuka. Craig Printing Company, InvercargillGoogle Scholar
  11. Douglas J (2014) What’s political ecology got to do with tourism? Tourism Geogr 16:8–13CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. Ewan JG, Armstrong D, Parker K, Seddon P (2008) Avian reintroduction biology: current issues for science and management. Avian Reintroduction Biology. Proceedings of an international symposium held at Zoological Society of London, 8–9 May 2008Google Scholar
  13. Fairhead J, Leach M (1996) Misreading the African landscape: society and ecology in a forest-savanna mosaic. Cambridge University Press, CambridgeCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. Felluga D (2016) Modules on Jameson: on late capitalism. Introductory guide to critical theory. Available at: http://www.purdue.edu/guidetotheory/marxism/modules/jamesonlatecapitalism.html. Accessed 28 Sept 2016
  15. Fletcher R (2010) Neoliberal environmentality: towards a poststructuralist political ecology of the conservation debate. Conserv Soc 8(3):171–181CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. Fletcher R (2014) Romancing the wild: cultural dimensions of ecotourism. Duke Universty Press, Durham, NCGoogle Scholar
  17. Groser T (2009) The conservation economy. Research cluster for natural resources law newsletter two, pp 2–3Google Scholar
  18. Hadwen W, Hill W, Pickering C (2007) Icons under threat: why monitoring visitors and their ecological impacts in protected areas matters. Ecol Manage Restor 8:177–181CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. Higham J, Shelton EJ (2011) Tourism and wildlife habituation: reduced population fitness or cessation of impact? Tour Manage 32(6):1290–1298CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. Jamieson D (2008) Ethics and the environment. Cambridge University Press, CambridgeCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. Knight R, White C (2009) Conservation for a new generation: redefining natural resources management. Island Press, WashingtonGoogle Scholar
  22. Kunkel B (2010) How much is too much? Lond Rev Books 33(3):9–14Google Scholar
  23. McPhee M (2009) Catlins bound. Catlins Wildlife Ecotours, OwakaGoogle Scholar
  24. Mels T (2009) Analysing environmental discourses and representations. In: Anderson K, Braun B (eds) Environment: critical essays in human geography. Ashgate, Aldershot, pp 385–399Google Scholar
  25. Morton T (2007) Ecology—Without nature: rethinking environmental aesthetics. Harvard University Press, MassachusettsGoogle Scholar
  26. Morton T (2010a) The ecological thought. Harvard University Press, Cambridge, MassachusettsGoogle Scholar
  27. Morton T (2010b) Ecology as text, text as ecology. Oxford Literary Rev 32(1):1–17CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. Mostafanezhad M, Norum R, Shelton, EJ, Thompson-Carr A (2016) Introduction. In: Mostafanezhad M, Norum R, Shelton EJ, Thompson-Carr A (eds) Political ecology of tourism: communities, power and the environment. Routledge, London, pp 1–22Google Scholar
  29. Newnham RM, Vandergoes MJ, Hendy CH, Lowe DJ, Preusser F (2007) A terrestrial palynological record for the last two glacial cycles from southwestern New Zealand. Quatern Sci Rev 26(3–4):517–535Google Scholar
  30. Newsome D, Moore S, Dowling R (2013) Natural area tourism: ecology, impacts and management. Channel View Publications, BristolGoogle Scholar
  31. New Zealand Department of Conservation (2000) The New Zealand biodiversity strategy. Available from: https://www.biodiversity.govt.nz/pdfs/picture/nzbs-whole.pdf. Accessed 28 Sept 2016
  32. New Zealand Department of Conservation (2016) Unpublished census of yellow-eyed penguin breeding pairs 2015–16Google Scholar
  33. Ollman B (1993) Dialectical investigations. Routledge, New YorkGoogle Scholar
  34. O’Riardon T (1976) Environmentalism. Pion, LondonGoogle Scholar
  35. Palley TI (2005) From Keynesianism to neoliberalism: shifting paradigms in economics. Neoliberalism: a critical reader, pp 20–29. Available at: http://www.thomaspalley.com/docs/articles/macro_policy/keynsianism_to_neoliberalism.pdf. Accessed 28 sept 2016
  36. Piketty T (2014) Capital in the 21st century. Harvard University Press, Cambridge, MassachusettsGoogle Scholar
  37. Rappaport J (1977) Community psychology: values, research and action. Holt, Rinehart and Winston, New YorkGoogle Scholar
  38. Reis A, Shelton EJ (2011) The nature of tourism studies. Tourism Anal 16(3):375–384CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  39. Robbins P (2004) Political ecology: a critical introduction. Wiley-Blackwell, New YorkGoogle Scholar
  40. Robbins P (2012) Political ecology: a critical introduction, 2nd edn. Wiley-Blackwell, New YorkGoogle Scholar
  41. Scandrett E (2010) Environmentalism of the poor and the political ecology of prophecy: a contribution to liberation ecotheology. Doctoral dissertation, University of BirminghamGoogle Scholar
  42. Seddon P, Armstrong D, Maloney R (2007) Developing the science of reintroduction biology. Conserv Biol 21(2):303–312CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  43. Seddon PJ, Ellenberg U, an Heezik Y (2013) Yellow-eyed penguin (Megadyptes antipodes). Penguins: natural history and conservation, pp 97–100. Available at: http://nzbirdsonline.org.nz/species/yellow-eyed-penguin. Accessed 28 Sept 2016
  44. Shelton EJ (2012) Unpublished PHD thesis at University of Otago, New ZealandGoogle Scholar
  45. Shelton EJ (2013) Conservation, biodiversity, and tourism in New Zealand: engaging with the conservation economy. In: Bekoff M (ed) Ignoring nature no more: the case for compassionate conservation. University of Chicago Press, Chicago, pp 192–194Google Scholar
  46. Shelton EJ, Higham JES, Seddon P (2004) Habituation, penguin research and ecotourism: some thoughts from left field. New Zealand J Zool 31(1):119 (abstract)Google Scholar
  47. Shelton EJ, Tucker H (2008) Managed to be wild: species recovery, island restoration and nature-based tourism in New Zealand. Tourism Rev Int 11(3):205–212Google Scholar
  48. Soper K (1995) What is nature?. Blackwell Publishers, OxfordGoogle Scholar
  49. Stonich SC (1998) Political ecology of tourism. Ann Tourism Res 25:25–54CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  50. Suzuki D (1999) The sacred balance: rediscovering our place in nature. Bantam Books, VancouverGoogle Scholar
  51. Tourism New Zealand (2016) Tourism 2025. Available at: http://www.tourism2025.org.nz/. Accessed 11 Sept 2016
  52. Tyrrell A (1989) Catlins pioneering. Heritage Books, Otago, DunedinGoogle Scholar
  53. Tyrrell A (1996) Catlins Rail: the story of the Catlins River branch railway 1879–1971. Catlins Historical Society Inc., OwakaGoogle Scholar
  54. Watts M, Peets R (2004) Liberating political ecology. In: Peets R, Watts M (eds) Liberation ecologies: environment, development and social movements. Routledge, New York, p 20Google Scholar
  55. Wildlands Consultancy (2014) Seabird re-establishment and habitat restoration at long point-Irahuka, Catlins. Report commissioned by Yellow-eyed Penguin TrustGoogle Scholar
  56. Worster D (1977) Nature’s economy: the roots of ecology. Sierra Club Books, San FranciscoGoogle Scholar
  57. Yellow-eyed Penguin Trust (2008) Long point/Irihuka (sic) restoration project discussion document. Yellow-eyed Penguin Trust, DunedinGoogle Scholar
  58. Yellow-eyed Penguin Trust (2012) Long point/Irahuka management plan. Yellow-eyed Penguin Trust, DunedinGoogle Scholar
  59. Zhang J, Shelton EJ (2015) Ordering the disordered subject: a critique of Chinese outbound tourists as New Zealand seeks to become China ready. Tourism Anal 20(3):343–353CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  60. Zimmerer KS (2006) Cultural ecology: at the interface with political ecology-the new geographies of environmental conservation and globalization. Prog Hum Geogr 32(1):63–78CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  • Eric J. Shelton
    • 1
    Email author
  • Hazel Tucker
    • 2
  • Jundan (Jasmine) Zhang
    • 3
  1. 1.Yellow-eyed Penguin TrustDunedinNew Zealand
  2. 2.Department of TourismUniversity of OtagoOtagoNew Zealand
  3. 3.Institute of Geography and Economic HistoryUmeå UniversityUmeåSweden

Personalised recommendations