In a posting aimed at promoting the bike paths ribboning across Massachusetts, the state’s official website includes a photograph of a beautiful bike path sheltered by trees that curves along deep blue waters and ends at a harbor bristling with sailboat masts.
“Cyclists love Massachusetts because of the beautiful scenery and variety of terrain available across the state,’’ reads the posting, which is time-stamped July 15.
While many local bicyclists would agree there are many alluring places to pedal in the state, no one will be riding along the curving beach path any time soon — unless they travel some 9,000 miles, to Auckland, New Zealand.
For reasons that were not immediately clear, the posting on mass.gov about the Bay State is illustrated with an image from that distant city.
Information with the photo identifies it as an image that can be downloaded from Shutterstock and Dreamstime, two stock photo websites.
And Google searches show that Australian and New Zealand media outlets have used the image for content on their sites.
Mass.gov officials could not be reached for comment on Wednesday.
Many of the blog’s posts have photos, and most of them, if not all, appear to be stock photos.Kiera Blessing can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.