Story: Matariki – Te Tau Hou Māori

Gourd for preserving birds

Gourd for preserving birds

Matariki was a time between the work of harvesting one year’s crops and planting for the next year. Pātaka (storehouses) would be full of supplies. Two foods were gathered at this time, however, and so are particularly associated with Matariki. These were kererū (wood pigeons) and korokoro (lampreys). Often birds would be preserved in their own fat in a gourd like the tahā huahua pictured here.

Using this item

Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa
Reference: I.004228

Permission of the Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa must be obtained before any re-use of this image.

All images & media in this story

How to cite this page:

Paul Meredith, 'Matariki – Te Tau Hou Māori - Cycles of life and death', Te Ara - the Encyclopedia of New Zealand, http://www.TeAra.govt.nz/en/photograph/5162/gourd-for-preserving-birds (accessed 19 July 2024)

Story by Paul Meredith, published 12 Jun 2006, reviewed & revised 19 Jun 2021