In 2016 DOC carried out the Million Dollar Mouse Project to eradicate mice from the islands, followed in 2018 by a monitoring programme to determine how successful this had been.
In 2018 the opportunity was taken to also carry out archaeological survey of the main Antipodes Island, including detailed recording of the 1886 castaway depot hut, the south coast sealers’ camp, the South Bay castaway cave, and five fingerposts. The south coast campsite is one of the earliest intact European sealing sites in New Zealand, which alone makes it highly significant.
The results of the survey illustrate the efforts that people made to survive in this harsh and unforgiving environment and also demonstrate how our relationship with the islands has changed over time, from a place of unbridled exploitation 200 years ago to having the highest level of legal protection for natureal values today.
A report was commissioned by DOC to document the archaeology of the islands, based on work carried out to date by various scientists and researchers and the results of an archaeological survey in 2018.