Donald Merton, QSM (22 February 1939 – 10 April 2011) was a New Zealand conservationist best known for saving the black robin from extinction. He also discovered the lek breeding system of the kakapo.
Until his retirement in April 2005, Don Merton was a senior member of the New Zealand Department of Conservation’s Threatened Species Section, within the Research, Development & Improvement Division, Terrestrial Conservation Unit, and of the Kakapo Management Group. He has had a long involvement in wildlife conservation, specialised in the management of endangered species since he completed a traineeship with the New Zealand Wildlife Service (NZWS) in 1960.
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“The logic of worldly success rests on a fallacy: the strange error that our perfection depends on the thoughts and opinions and applause of other men! A weird life it is, indeed, to be living always in somebody elses imagination, as if that were the only place in which one could at last become real!”
—Thomas Merton (19151968)