Ka mihi aroha

To all our whānau, suffering the loss of loved ones at this time Awarua Rūnanga extends all our love and sympathy.

Rā whānau

Happy birthday to all of you celebrating birthdays this month.

Special commercial fishing closures

In the mid-1980s, Uncle Harold Ashwell and Uncle George Ryan facilitated a programme to identify and protect customary fishing areas of significance around the Tītī Islands. Thirty-four areas were identified, focusing primarily on pāua and kina gathering areas.

These areas were to be closed to commercial fishers by regulation, however this did not happen given the lack of Governmental interest in facilitating such outcomes in the 1980s. This resulted in a ‘gentlemen’s agreement with commercial fishers not to fish these areas. Unfortunately this agreement was ignored over subsequent years.

From the late 1990s, onwards birders made constant requests for the Office of Te Rūnanga o Ngāi Tahu to complete the work of George and Harold to protect these key customary fisheries for birding whānau. The work to enact these regulations was initiated by the Customary Fisheries Unit in the late 1990s and this work was continued by Kaupapa Taiao, Toitū Te Whenua and most recently by Tribal Interests.

In March, the Minister for Primary Industries approved the establishment of special commercial fishing closures for thirty-one areas around the Tītī Islands (three of the original 34 areas identified for protection were protected using Mātaitai Reserves in July 2010).

The new regulations were approved by Cabinet in June and came into force in July. If you wish to obtain a copy of the maps and documentation these closures cover you can contact members of the Rakiura Tītī Island (Beneficial Islands) Committee or members of Rakiura Tītī Islands Administering Body (Crown Islands).

Membership database

We are constantly updating our membership database and have found that many members’ children have had children of their own who require registering. If you are one of these people we encourage you to contact us on at the office to request a form/s.

NB: If your enquiries relate to registering with Ngāi Tahu please contact the Whakapapa Unit on: 0800 524 8248.

We also encourage those members who have changed residential or email addresses to update their details by contacting the rūnanga on 03 212 6029/027 525 7055; or email [email protected]


If members have an item of interest that they wish to share with te whānau o Ngāi Tahu please contact Tina Mitchell.