WWF is Pro-Extinction

WWF-New Zealand: working to make harmful human actions extinct since 1975

Why is WWF Pro-Extinction?

WWF is Pro-Extinction because we want all New Zealanders to make certain harmful human behaviours extinct.

We are asking everyone to make three behaviours extinct, because doing so will support the restoration of the Hauraki Gulf/Tīkapa Moana / Te Moana-nui-ā-Toi and help save its precious resident, the Bryde’s whale.

​Why should we care about the Bryde’s whale?

The Bryde’s whale is a ‘Nationally Critical’ species and may be at risk of local extinction, with only 135 left in the Hauraki Gulf.

The Bryde's habitat has been negatively impacted by the compounding effects of climate change, overfishing, and pollution.

Fish stocks have halved and now Bryde’s whales are ingesting around three million microplastics a day.Too many of us have become indifferent to the impact of our behaviour on its future.

We know a healthy whale population is an indicator of a healthy ocean, which is in turn an indicator of a healthy planet.

Helping the Bryde’s means cleaning up our oceans, revitalising our fish stocks, and building a future where people live in harmony with nature.

What three behaviours should we make extinct?

To help save the Bryde’s whale, we need to make three behaviours extinct. We’re asking you to:

  • Make overfishing extinct

  • Make plastic pollution extinct 

  • Make indifference extinct

Why these three behaviours?

Making these three behaviours extinct will have a long-lasting impact on the health of the Hauraki Gulf and help support the Bryde’s whale’s population. It will also help restore the environment of Aotearoa from sea to sky.


Making overfishing extinct will help our ocean’s delicate ecosystem recover.

Overfishing has a major impact on marine systems. We are currently taking more fish commercially than before the Hauraki Marine Gulf Park was established in 2000. The area is also Aotearoa’s most intensively recreationally fished area. Key fish stocks have declined by over 50%.

How can I help?

  • Know the rules! Become familiar with your local area's fishing rules.

  • Express Tikanga: Respect the resources by sticking to the limits and only taking what you need for a feed. Also, release your first catch of the day as a gift back to the ocean/Tangaroa (god of the ocean).

  • Bigger Isn’t Better:  By leaving the big breeding fish behind, you get more fish in the long run. 

  • Buy better, buy local: choose locally sourced fish and ask for sustainable fish at shops and restaurants.

  • Be Guided: Use seafood guides to choose wisely.


Making plastic pollution extinct will help keep plastic from clogging our ocean.

Did you know that unless we make changes, plastic will outnumber fish by 2050?. Whales in the Hauraki Gulf are ingesting about 25,000 microplastics per mouthful - that is around 3 million per day. Most of that plastic is in their food, such as zooplankton. As well as being ingested, plastic can entangle, suffocate, and drown marine life.

How can I help?

  • Cut the waste: Avoid single-use plastics. Bring your own water bottles and keep cups. Select products without any plastic packaging or biodegradable packaging. If you can’t avoid the purchase or switch to a reusable option, choose recyclable plastics with a genuine market in NZ (codes 1,2,5).

  • Pick it Up: Pick up plastic rubbish on your own, or participate in beach clean-ups. Visit Conservation Volunteers NZ or Sustainable Coastlines sites for local opportunities.

  • Raise your voice: We need a global plastics treaty to combat this global problem, add your voice here.


Making indifference extinct will mean we are more conscious about how human actions affect the world around us, including the ocean and beaches we enjoy so much.

We know human activities are driving the loss of nature and climate change. So, whether it’s intentional or not, we can no longer be indifferent to how the choices we make affect nature.

We need to make indifference extinct in our own lives, but also within our society, our economies, and our government in order to build a future in which we live, and thrive, in harmony with nature.  To do this, we need at least 30% of our ocean in effective Marine Protection Areas (MPAs) and that we need to cut our carbon emissions to keep warming below 1.5°C. 

How can I help?

  • Eat Wisely: A third of all food produced is wasted. By adopting a plant-based diet, you can eat better for you and your planet.

  • Think twice: reducing consumption is good for the planet and your wallet. Ask yourself, “Do I really need this?” Or buy local and second-hand.

  • Travel Better: See the difference you can make by walking, cycling, carpooling, using public transport, or switching to an electric/hybrid vehicle.

  • Smaller Footprint: Carbon Click can help you or your business to measure and reduce your carbon footprint.

  • Save Energy: From powering your home with renewable energy to using insulation and reducing power consumption, learn how here.

  • Put your money where your mouth is: Only borrow or invest your money in financial institutions that don’t fund or invest in the fossil fuel industry, such as KiwiBank and Co-operative Bank and look at changing your KiwiSaver.

  • Raise your voice: Urge leaders to cut Aotearoa’s emissions and invest in nature-based solutions as a part of our national climate plan.

  • Support Protection: Support efforts to protect areas of our coastal and marine space.  Highly protected areas build resilience to climate change and other stressors, and provide other social and ecological benefits, both within and outside the protected area. It's important that Marine Protected Areas (MPAs) are established through collaborative processes with mana whenua, communities and stakeholders working together.

By making these three behaviours extinct, we will support the recovery of the Hauraki Gulf, and help save the Bryde’s whale.