A brilliant Polynesian navigator called Kupe in 950AD discovered Aotearoa. His people are said to have returned there in 1350AD. There were not many mammals; most of the birds were flightless. There were other people living here, the Morioris, or Moa hunters, the Maoris are said to have assimilated them, or killed them off, who knows?
It wasn’t until 1642 that the Europeans started to arrive starting with Abel Tasman. This Dutchman decided to call it New Zeeland after a province in Holland. He didn’t stay long after some of his crew were killed and eaten.
The British explorer, James Cook came again in 1796, sailed around and then claimed the land for the British Empire- the arrogance is stunning!!! Then he headed up to Australia. The first Europeans to arrive were fishermen, sealers and whalers, who promptly decimated the oceans populations, and on land they spread disease and firearms among the local population…sound familiar?