Natural Wonders

A female longfin eel’s epic migration


A female longfin eel which could be up to 100 years old makes the journey on Banks Peninsula to the place where she will mate and die

Our Big Blue Backyard is one of New Zealand's most celebrated and discussed TV series, produced by the world-renowned NHNZ - formerly Natural History New Zealand - based in Dunedin.

Newsroom is featuring some of the top moments from this incredible show, including behind-the-scenes interviews with underwater cinematographer Kina Scollay, and NHNZ executive producer Judith Curran.

“This is probably one of the most emotional scenes from our series. The epic migration of the female longfin eel is a very iconic New Zealand story and I am so proud of how my camera team managed to portray the journey in such a cinematic way. The big female eel (she could be up to 100 years old) has left the safety of Lake Ellesmere and now has to slither across the Kaitorete Spit barrier to reach the Pacific Ocean to complete her journey to the place she will mate and die. These eels are such precious New Zealand kararehe and this story is a very powerful one, especially as our waterways are in such bad shape currently, and these eels are in danger of extinction.”

Judith Curran                                                                                                                               NHNZ Executive Producer

*NHNZ series Our Big Blue Backyard was made for TV One with the help of NZ on Air

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