Unauthorised collecting and export of native plants and animals can be damaging to biodiversity, and can also deplete rare species. In the past, collectors have been partly responsible for the extinction of species. These wētā specimens were seized before leaving the country. They had allegedly been collected for scientific purposes, but any recognised scientific organisation will always seek permission before collecting plants or animals.
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New Zealand Wildlife Enforcement Group (Department of Conservation, Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry, New Zealand Customs Service)
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