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The "Tangaroa" is an Oceangraphic and fisheries Research vessel operated by the New Zealand Institute of Water and Air (N.I.W.A.) and is based in Wellington.  In 1998 she was involved in New Zealand's contribution to OCEAN'98,  the United Nations "International Year of the Ocean".

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TANGAROA 1  1998 Cover from Tangaroa engaged on Fisheries research in Antarctic Waters.  US$4

N.B: The name "Tangaroa" is the Maori name for the "God of the Seas".

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TANGAROA 2  2000 (March 20th) Cover from "Tangaroa" Antarctic Research voyage.  US$4

N.B. The "Tangaroa" undertook a geoscientific research trip for the Australian Antarctic Division early in 2000 carrying a number of Italian scientists from the Italian Observatorio Geofisico Sperimentale to an area off the Antarctic coast between the Dibble and the Ninnis Glaciers in King GeorgeV Land. The "Tangaroa"left Wellington on the 10th of February, 2000 and returned to Wellington on the 20th March 2000 where this cover is postmarked. 

The datestamp used is a new SID (Self-Inking Datestamp) and this usage is the very first usage of it. Wellington had introduced its first  SID on February 15th with a bi-coloured one but this had broken by early March and was not replaced until the above black only SID was introduced on March 20th 2000.

-------------- 2001 ROSS SEA DEEPWATER MAPPING  --------------

The "Tangaroa" undertook a Hydrographic Cruise in the Ross Sea starting from January 29th, 2001 and finishing 17 March, 2001. This work was carried out on behalf of New Zealand's LINZ (Land information New Zealand) to collect data for the first official hydrographic chart of the Ross Sea. with the increased frequency of vessels in the area, the New Zealand Government decided on the need for accurate navigational maps. "Tangaroa" was extensively modified for the survey with a multimillion dollar echo-sounder fitted to the hull. She also used a launch called "Pelorus".

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The view at left shows "Tangaroa" in the Ross Sea in February, 2001 undertaking the survey.

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TANGAROA 3  2001 (March 19th) Cover from "Tangaroa" Ross Sea Mapping  US$5

Note:   "K080"  relates to the official event classification for the expedition.

The Map at right shows the area that the "Tangaroa" was mapping.

This area covers the main shipping   routes in the Ross Sea and around the Balleny Islands.

The "Tangaroa" was largely based at around cape Adare and at Cape Hallett a shore depot was established as a safety station.

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At left we can see the Safety Depot established at Cape Hallett.

-----------------------     2002 JARE 43 NEXT STAGE     --------------------

"Tangaroa" was chartered in 2002 by the Japanese National Institute of Polar Research to take part in JARE 43 and in particular their STAGE programme. This refers to and is an acronym for Studies on Antarctic Ocean & Global Environment. "Tangaroa" was one of 4 vessels involved in JARE 43. the others were "Aurora Australis" from Australia and "Hakuho Maru" and "Shirase" both from Japan. "Tangaroa" departed her home port, Wellington on the 28th of January 2002.

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"Tangaroa" in Antarctic waters.

"Tangaroa" picked up her Japanese party in Hobart on the 5th of February, 2002 before departing for the Antarctic coast working mainly in TAAF waters close to Dumont d' Urville. 

She carried a 28 person Japanese Science party plus One Norwegian, one Italian working on behalf on Australia and the "Tangaroa's" New Zealand crew led by Captain Andrew Leachman. Her Ice Pilot was New Zealander John Parsloe. "Tangaroa" returned to Hobart on the 8th of March 2002 after a successful expedition.

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TANGAROA 4  2002 (March 8th) Ice Pilot signed JARE cover posted at Hobart  US$8

Note: This cover was posted on arrival back in Hobart, Tasmania of the "Tangaroa". The vessel had not called at any other ports during her expedition

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TANGAROA 5  2002 (March 8th) Paquebot cover posted at Hobart  US$8

Note: This cover bears a Ross Dependency stamp and has been posted under the paquebot scheme when the vessel returned to Hobart.

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TANGAROA 6  2004 (March 5th) Cover posted after return from Ross Sea  US$5

Note: The "Tangaroa" and the "Italica" operated a joint Ross Sea expedition to map the sea bed of the Ross Sea and the area around the nearby Balleny Islands. The vessels also undertook marine biology research during which several new marine species were discovered. Several members were interchanghed between the two vessels. Because the "Tangaroa" did not go as far south as Ross Island all mail was brought back on the vessel and mailed through the Ross Agency in New Zealand.

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