Scientists are frightened by the findings about the state of the ice in New Zealand.

In particular, a team of scientists flew around the end of March, over their peaks and spent eight hours in the air, taking hours of thousands of photos of glaciers for the annual snow survey.

What they found with particular concern is that the ice caps have not only shrunk dramatically but continue to melt at a rapid rate.

Andrew Mackintosh, a professor at Monash University in Australia who was on the flight, said in a statement that he was “shocked” by what they saw.

Not a little, not much, some of the smaller glaciers already disappeared he said, while the famous Franz Josef and Fox glaciers showed strong signs of retreat.

“This year’s observations reinforce the view that we continue to see ice loss in the southern Alps,” Andrew Lorrey, a scientist at the National Institute for Water and Atmospheric Research (NIWA) and the study’s coordinator, told CNN.

Two years of record-breaking heat have taken their toll on the glaciers.


2022 was New Zealand’s warmest year on record, breaking a record set just a year earlier.

But the ice-shrinking trend continues.


The survey, organized by NIWA, has been carried out almost every year for nearly five decades and aims to capture a snapshot of a set of more than 50 glaciers – ranging in size and altitude – as close as possible to the end of snowmelt and ice.


“Right now, we’re seeing rapid changes happening in the mountains, with indications that the rise of the snowline is accelerating along with ice loss,” Lorrey said.


“As the current warming trend continues, we will continue to lose more glaciers,” he added.