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Week of January 10, 2021 | View the Map

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At the end of our last blog entry, we had asked you to help us figure out which cardinal direction Dewey (and his adults) would be traveling from Morocco to New Zealand. The majority of blog readers chose southeast. And you were correct!! Mr. Vuhn sent us a lot of information about New Zealand. He knows that we love learning geography. Mr. Vuhn told us that New Zealand is part of Oceania. Neither Meri nor I had any idea what Oceania meant. Did you know that Oceania is now classified as a continent? Some people still call Australia a "continent," but Mr. Vuhn told us that it is really part of Oceania. Oceania is located in the Pacific Ocean. And although Oceania is the smallest of all continents, it is one of the most fascinating and diverse areas in the world. I wish we could be there exploring, but we are still here at home in Phoenix, Arizona. I am so glad that we can research the case using the Internet, but it is getting so frustrating to not be on the ground ourselves!

Oceania is made up of many islands and countries, it is kind of confusing. Oceania is divided into four regions. Each region contains numerous countries and islands. The regions include Australasia, Polynesia, Micronesia, and Melanesia. We attached a map that shows Oceania.

The first region (Australasia) includes Australia, New Zealand, and a few smaller islands belonging to Australia. The largest island/country in Oceania is Australia. In fact, the total land area of Oceania is approximately 9,008,000 square kilometers. Australia accounts for 7,600,000 of those square kilometers. So, over 75% of Oceania is Australia. Australia is surrounded by both the Indian and Pacific Oceans. Although Oceania is the smallest continent in the world, Australia is the sixth-largest country in the world. Geography is fascinating.

The region of Polynesia includes numerous island nations; however many are claimed or are territories of other countries nearby or from around the world, such as New Zealand, France, the United States, or the United Kingdom. Somoa, Tonga, and Tuvalu are all located in Oceania and are all actually independent nations.

The region of Micronesia consists of the Federated States of Micronesia, Guam (a United States territory), Kiribati, Marshall Islands, Naura, Northern Mariana Islands (another United States territory), and Palau.

The region of Melanesia includes East Timor, Fiji, Papua New Guinea, Solomon Islands, and Vanuatu. New Caledonia is also a country of Melanesia, but is a territory of France. Indonesia is also partly in Micronesia. This is the most fascinating country of all, in my opinion. Indonesia consists of 17,508 islands (although humans only live on about 6,000 of them). That is SO many islands! Indonesia is located on two different continents: both Oceania and Asia. Can you believe that? I never knew a country could be located on two continents.

Now we are waiting to hear more from Mr. Vuhn. I am so glad that Scott helped us in Africa. If he hadn't helped us, we would have never gotten to "meet" Mr. Vuhn. I don't think this case will take too much longer with Mr. Vuhn helping us to get Dewey back. What do you think?

     - Geo

This is a picture of the yellow-eyed penguin (found in New Zealand).

This is a picture of a really cool bridge in New Zealand - isn't it neat! Would you walk across that bridge?


Map of Oceania
Check out this map of Oceania. All of the countries in Oceania are written in RED.


Oceania Explained
Do you want to learn more about Oceania? This video does a great job explaining all of those many islands.


Holy Idaho! The Dewey saga is really heating up! We have found the International Conference on Global Warming on the Internet and are getting ready to watch via livestream. They are in Wellington, New Zealand. Early today, Mr. Vuhn went with the Equators (and we think Dewey) to visit the Wellington Botanic Gardens. He sent us a link to the beautiful attraction and we included it at the bottom of this post. Be sure to check it out!

The Equators are second on the agenda as guest speakers later today (our time). They are talking about the Northwest Passage. The Northwest Passage is a shortcut between the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans through the Canadian Arctic. This passage is a direct route for ships to travel from Europe to Asia across the Arctic Ocean. Parts of the passage are becoming ice-free for the first time since satellite records began to be kept in the 1970s. The Equators must have been using Dewey to find out the truth about the Northwest Passage. Holy Idaho!

In other news - NEW ZEALAND ROCKS! The more we learn about New Zealand, the more I want to GO!!! New Zealand is located in the South Pacific Ocean and is Southwest of Australia. New Zealand is about the same size as the state of Colorado (the home of Denver, The Mile High City). There are many natural resources found in New Zealand: natural gas, iron ore, sand, gold, coal, timber, limestone, and hydropower. Earthquakes are very common in New Zealand, but are rarely severe. This country also has numerous volcanoes. Do you suppose the earthquakes and volcanoes are related? New Zealand has three national languages (English, Maori, and sign language). I wonder why one country would have three national languages? About 80% of New Zealanders live in major cities. I guess this is because work is easier to find in the cities. Can you think of other reasons why New Zealanders (sometimes known as "kiwis" - not to be confused with kiwifruit!) might live mostly in cities? Most of the major cities are located on the coast of New Zealand, which makes it easier to ship items. Tourism is a major industry in New Zealand and a reasonable number of New Zealand residents work in the tourism industry. We will update our blog tomorrow morning - after we watch the conference. They are in a different time zone there. We are about 20 hours behind Wellington. So it is already tomorrow there! Right now it is 4pm in the afternoon here and in Wellington it is noon tomorrow (Monday). They are set to speak on Monday night. I can't wait.

     - Meri

Check out the amazing landscape of New Zealand!

Look at this beautiful pond in the mountains of New Zealand. Wow!

Here is a beautiful picture of a rainforest in New Zealand.


This site takes you an a 360 degree virtual tour of New Zealand.


Check out the Botanic Gardens
Mr. Vuhn sent us this link from the Botanic Gardens that they visited (Dewey walked them too!)


What is the Northwest Passage?
Learn more about the Northwest Passage with this up to date site.


Holy Idaho! I don't know where to begin. Today is the most exciting (and crazy) day of our investigation. Mr. Vuhn called us (from prison). He had one phone call that he could make and called us. I am glad that we answered, since it was from an unknown number! He wanted to make sure that Uncle GT knew that he had been taken to prison, so that he could contact the New Zealand authorities and let them know that he was innocent.

Mr. Vuhn had decided that he was going to alert the security guards at the conference about the Equators and how they stole Dewey. (Since it was a virtual conference there were only 10 people there total including the Equators, the security guards, and Mr. Vuhn.) It was the Equators turn to speak when all of the sudden Mr. Vuhn was taken into police custody. Mrs. Equator had told the security guards that Mr. Vuhn had been following them and trying to steal their dog. (I am guessing that the Equators figured out that Mr. Vuhn was helping us now! However, Mr. Vuhn had proof that he had been hired by Claude Equator - so the police arrested him too!

You are probably wondering what Phoebe Equator was up to this entire time. Well, she and her husband, Claude, gave the speech. After the speech Phoebe went to check on Dewey (according to the security guards) and then she LEFT WITH DEWEY! She let the police take her husband and Mr Vuhn and didn't even care. We are guessing that she hid and escaped before the police could find her. Or maybe, the police thought that she was not guilty, only Mr. E? What will happen now to Dewey? What should we do now? We need your help. Should we call the police station in Wellington to try to get more information from Mr. Vuhn? Should we wait and see if Mrs. E contacts us? Or should we contact Uncle GT for some advice. Holy Idaho! I didn't see that coming. Did you?

     - Meri

Here are the Equators! Can you believe it - we took a screenshot of them during the conference before they went to talk.

Tell Geo and Meri what to do:

- Should we call the police station in Wellington to try to get more information from Mr. Vuhn?

- Should we call Uncle GT with an update and to find out what he wants us to do next?

- Should we wait and see if Mrs. E contacts us?

Links to learn more :

Kiwi Conservation Club
This website provides information about the unique wildlife of New Zealand.



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