What we do;

We are a not-for-project venture engaging the public in hands on exploration of all things cold-blood and spineless!  The Open Science Lab pops up with magnifying equipment and live specimens contained in their man-made habitats (they are released back to their habitat at the end of the session).

Children and adults maybe invited to sieve through leaf litter and find a critter of interest to view up close or scoop up water critters and learn about what they tell us about the health of our waterways.

Experts and enthusiasts of the largely hidden world of invertebrates are on hand to ask and answer questions while exploring alongside participants.



Our not for profit pop up OpenScienceLab NZ is for engaging communities in Science and seeks to increase biodiversity awareness by supporting citizen science.


  • to grow biodiversity awareness and invertebrate interest within the wider community

Our goals:

  • to grow biodiversity awareness in all things cold-blooded and spineless.
  • to develop curious minds and mindfulness of our natural capital.
  • to provide outreach programmes using microscopy to expand out worldview.
  • to foster a connection between people, space and environment.
  • to support citizen science in invertebrate research (and encourage data sharing with NatureWatch).
  • to help inform conservation efforts


Who are we?

Email: wellingtonopensciencelab@gmail.com

Karin (co-founder and outreach educator)

Karin’s background is in landscape ecology, geography and ecology. She also have a PhD in Zoology (VUW). She is an Honorary Research Associate at Te Papa and works part time for DOC. Karin’s current research focuses on NZ landsnails (taxonomy, systematics and biogeography) and the development of an online atlas of terrestrial molluscs. She is interested in community engagement in science, science at primary school, future studies, future scenarios and paradigm shifts.

Natasha (co-founder and outreach educator)

Natasha is a provisionally resisted teacher with an interest in outreach education.  She has a Post Graduate Diploma in Science from Massey University majoring in Cultural Geography and Environmental Practice.

Ann (outreach educator)

Ann is a forensic scientist and experienced educator of microscopy.   She supports hands on education.


in the news


Would you like to be a Session Volunteer?

The Wellington Open Science Lab invites you to volunteer your time for science education.  Email Us

Current volunteers 

Dave,  is passionate about advertising our huge diversity of small native land snails. So far over 460 species have been named with an estimated total of 1200–2000. Most are small – under 3 mm – and easily overlooked.   Dave specialises in micro-photography and produces snail posters and snail identification CDs.  These resources he shares at the OpenLab.










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