Story: Population change

Pākehā fertility rate, 1860–2000

Pākehā fertility rate, 1860–2000

Pākehā fertility was high in the 19th century because most women married at young ages. Fertility peaked in the 1870s, then dropped significantly as more women delayed marriage or did not marry at all. The fertility rate increased rapidly in the 1940s. This resulted in the 'baby boom', which lasted until the early 1970s. The increasing availability of a range of contraceptives from this period led to another serious decline in fertility rates, which dipped below replacement level (2.1 births per woman) in parts of the 1980s, 1990s and early 2000s.

Using this item

Te Ara - The Encyclopedia of New Zealand

Source: Statistics New Zealand; Ian Pool, Arunachalam Dharmalingam, and Janet Sceats, The New Zealand family from 1840: a demographic history. Auckland: Auckland University Press, 2007, p. 19

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How to cite this page:

Ian Pool, 'Population change - Pākehā fertility and mortality', Te Ara - the Encyclopedia of New Zealand, (accessed 25 March 2018)

Story by Ian Pool, published 5 May 2011