Wildlife reserve our new Zealandia

NEW NAME: Wellington's Karori Sanctuary is renaming itself Zealandia.
NEW NAME: Wellington's Karori Sanctuary is renaming itself Zealandia.

Wellington's Karori Sanctuary is renaming itself Zealandia in a $25,000 rebranding exercise that will see its green hues ditched for an earthy orange.

The Zealandia name was thought up by branding company Designworks, Sanctuary trust chief executive Nancy McIntosh-Ward said. "It's something we've been thinking about for the last few years."

The new name - and matching logo - were officially launched at a function last night. It comes from a continent known as Zealandia, which broke away from Gondwanaland 85 million years ago, slowly drifted east, then sank. Modern-day New Zealand is thought to sit on Zealandia's tip.

"We chose the name because that's where our story started," Ms McIntosh-Ward said.

The 225-hectare Karori Sanctuary was established in 1995, and is home to some of New Zealand's most threatened species, including tuatara and kiwi.

Its new logo features Zealandia on an orange background, with a silhouetted kiwi that can be swapped for other creatures including tui, kaka and gecko.

It includes a subtitle of The Karori Sanctuary Experience and Te Mara a Tane, meaning The Garden of Tane.

The rebranding, which cost $25,000, comes just weeks after the sanctuary received a $1.9 million bailout from Wellington City Council to cover spiralling costs for its new $16.6 million visitors' centre.

But Ms McIntosh-Ward said the council cash was a separate issue. "It related to investing in world-class facilities, while we also need to invest in marketing."

She said the Zealandia name had gone down well with the sanctuary's board and volunteers, and predicted the public would like it it.

But Auckland University marketing expert Tom Agee predicted an initially lukewarm reception for the new label. "Don't expect Wellingtonians to take to it overnight."


The Dominion Post