Navigation Menu

Puhikererū (Mt Furneaux) 

The scared maunga of Puhikererū is also of great significance to Ngāti Apa ki te Rā Tō because of its association with Kupe.

Puhikererū overlooks Te Anamāhanga (Port Gore). Its name (“plume of the pigeon”) evokes the kererū that were found here, the appearance of the clouds as they come over the maunga, and also recalls a tipuna particularly associated with this place.

When Kupe came to Aotearoa, he brought two birds with him named Rupe and Kawau-a-toru. The task of these birds was, among other things, to seek out the fruits of the forest and determine currents. When Kupe settled at Rimurapa (Sinclair Head, on the northern shores of Te Moana o Ngā Raukawakawa), his birds flew to Te Waipounamu and alighted on Puhikererū. Rupe joined the local pigeons in feasting on the abundant forest food of the maunga and its environs, and never returned to Kupe.

Puhikererū was an important mahinga kai for Ngāti Apa ki te Rā Tō residing at Anamāhanga and elsewhere. It was a place where kererū could be found in abundance, feeding on karaka, miro and other berries.