National Māori Tuna Conference 2017

Ngā mihi ki a koutou,

Te Wai Māori gratefully acknowledges and thanks Whanganui Iwi for hosting the second National Māori Tuna Conference at the Whanganui War Memorial Centre.

We were joined by around 200 iwi, commercial and customary fishing interests, scientists and policy advisers from central and local government, independent experts and scientists to talk about tuna.

The conference theme was ‘Te Mana o Te Wai. Te Mana o Ngā Tuna’. Te Mana o Ngā Tuna is fundamental to the identity of Māori as a people, as well as Aotearoa New Zealand as a nation. Kaitiaki, fisheries managers, educators, and leaders all share responsibility to secure the future of tuna.

The first day’s programme provided insights into projects and mahi taking place around the motu to develop new knowledge and tools for protection, management and sustainable use of tuna.  Developing a closer relationship between commercial and customary non-commercial sectors of the tuna fishery was key to combating outside threats to freshwater habitat and developing management regimes to better deliver on the expectations of both sectors. 

The day closed with a special presentation to Bill Kerrison, to acknowledge his lifetime contributions to tuna health and welfare. He was presented with ‘Te Mana o Ngā Tuna, Bill Ruru Memorial Award for Lifetime Contribution’.

The second day’s programme began with a wrap-up of the previous day’s events, and a presentation from Whanganui, Taranaki and Murihiku iwi, who with the support of Te Wai Māori Trust, are working to protect and manage piharau/kanakana as a customary non-commercial fishery.

The conference ended with an open discussion forum for attendees to share their whakaaro on a National Tuna Forum.  Attendees agreed that structured collaboration is important if we are to have an abundant tuna fishery for future generations.  We must act now!

If you were able to join us at Whanganui – thank you!

If you couldn’t, you can watch videos of presentations and download PDFs on the Programme & Presentations tab.

The National Māori Tuna Conference was organised by Te Wai Māori Trust. It advances Māori interests in freshwater fisheries, undertaking and funding research, development and education; and promote the protection and enhancement of freshwater fisheries habitats.

Kia tau te rangimārie.

Click here for the programme.