A recent article in the Southland Express discussed the special relationship Ngāi Tahu have with the nine mātaitai in the Southland Council area. This is a relationship Ngāi Tahu have with all of the 29 gazetted mātaitai in our takiwā.

Nigel Scott, Principal Advisor – Mahinga Kai, says mātaitai symbolise the special relationship Ngāi Tahu have with traditional fishing grounds. “They also ensure Ngāi Tahu are able to establish excellent working partnerships with communities, community groups and research providers such as Otago University which act to protect our in-shore resources; they allow us to improve our understanding of the local ecosystem and are ensuring we are able to effectively monitor resources and mātaitai have also created an increased interest among tribal members in marine science, research and academia. Likewise, they have increased interest from scientists in the benefits of studying customary approaches which have worked for centuries; and they have acted to empower community members to protect and enhance their local natural resources and mahinga kai.” [Read more…]