Story: Te hopu tuna – eeling

Piharau (lamprey)

Piharau (lamprey)

The piharau or lamprey is popularly known as the lamprey eel. It looks like an eel, but has no backbone. Lampreys have toothed mouths with which they rasp flesh and suck blood from fish and marine mammals. Māori valued them as food.

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Department of Conservation
Reference: 10049717
Photograph by Stephen Moore

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How to cite this page:

Basil Keane, 'Te hopu tuna – eeling - Catching piharau – lampreys', Te Ara - the Encyclopedia of New Zealand, (accessed 14 April 2024)

Story by Basil Keane, published 24 Sep 2007