Puketutu Island

Last updated

Te Motu a Hiaroa
Puketutu Island
Puketutu Island Near Mangere Bridge.jpg
The motu (island) today, from Mangere Mountain
Highest point
Elevation 65 m (213 ft)
Coordinates 36°57′55″S174°44′50″E / 36.965186°S 174.747248°E / -36.965186; 174.747248 Coordinates: 36°57′55″S174°44′50″E / 36.965186°S 174.747248°E / -36.965186; 174.747248
Location North Island, New Zealand
Volcanic arc/belt Auckland volcanic field
New Zealand location map.svg
Disc Plain red.svg
Te Motu a Hiaroa Island
Te Motu a Hiaroa is located in Manukau Harbor

Te Motu a Hiaroa (Puketutu Island) is a volcanic island in the Manukau Harbour, New Zealand, and is part of the Auckland volcanic field. European settlers called it Weekes' Island, but this was eventually abandoned in favour of the historical Māori name. The island is joined to the mainland via a causeway known as Te Ara Tāhuna.


Te Motu a Hiaroa means "the island of Hiaroa" in reference to an ancestor who arrived on the island after journeying on the Tainui waka. [1] Puketutu refers to one of the several maunga (mountains) and puke (hills) on the island. The New Zealand Ministry for Culture and Heritage gives a translation of "tutu shrub hill" for Puketutu. [2]


Te Motu a Hiaroa is linked in Māori traditions to Mataaoho, the deity responsible for volcanic activity, who created the wider Auckland volcanic field. The creation of these volcanoes is the result of Te Riri o Mataaoho (‘the wrath of Mataaoho’). It once contained a number of volcanic cones and hills which were used for the construction of and the establishment of tuahu (alters). Its lava flows and rich friable soils were gardened for kumura and other cultivates, similar to the Otuataua Stonefields at Te Ihu a Maataoho (Ihumatao). The Island is said to be protected by several guardian taniwha, and is closely associated with the arrival of the Tainui waka around the 14th century. From its earliest settlement the island has been occupied by tohunga and rangatira, earning it a reputation as an island of tohunga and a whare wānanga or place of learning traditional Māori mātauranga and tikanga. The island is considered sacred to Tainui and Te Waiohua iwi and hapū. Alienation of the customary owners of the island occurred in the mid 19th century during colonisation.

In the 1950s, several of its scoria cones were heavily quarried for fill to extend Auckland Airport nearby, along with the construction of the Mangere wastewater oxidation ponds which bordered the island. The island's highest point, 65m high Te Taumata a Rakataura (Pinnacle Hill), was retained. Sir Henry Kelliher had owned the island since the 1940s. The Kelliher charitable trust proposed a scheme whereby biosolids from the nearby Mangere wastewater treatment plant (covering 600ha on the landward sides, and served around 600,000 people in the 1990s) [3] could be used to reshape the older form of the island. While the process could take up to 35 years, the final goal was envisaged as reestablishing the Māori customary owners and providing open space for Aucklanders. [4] Watercare then bought a long-term lease of the island and transferred the island's title ownership to Te Motu a Hiaroa (Puketutu Island) Charitable Trust, with representatives from Waikato-Tainui, Te Kawerau a Maki, and Makaurau Marae/Te Ahiwaru Waiohua. [5]

Te Motu a Hiaroa Charitable Trust plans to reestablish a whare wānanga and has a partnership with Auckland Council to rehabilitate the island and create a type of cultural park accessible to the people of Auckland.

See also

Related Research Articles

Public sector organisations in New Zealand wikimedia list article

Public sector organisations in New Zealand comprise the state sector organisations plus those of local government.

Maungakiekie / One Tree Hill mountain in New Zealand

Maungakiekie / One Tree Hill is a 182-metre (597 ft) volcanic peak in Auckland, New Zealand. It is an important memorial place for both Māori and other New Zealanders. The suburb around the base of the hill is also called One Tree Hill. It is surrounded by the suburbs of Royal Oak to the west, and clockwise, Epsom, Greenlane, Oranga, and Onehunga. The summit provides views across the Auckland area, and allows visitors to see both of Auckland's harbours.

Auckland volcanic field volcanic field

The Auckland volcanic field is an area of monogenetic volcanoes covered by much of the metropolitan area of Auckland, New Zealand's largest city, located in the North Island. The approximately 53 volcanoes in the field have produced a diverse array of maars, tuff rings, scoria cones, and lava flows. No volcano has erupted twice, but eruptions lasted for various periods ranging from a few weeks to several years. The field is fuelled entirely by basaltic magma, unlike the explosive subduction-driven volcanism in the central North Island, such as at Mount Ruapehu and Lake Taupo. The field is currently dormant, but could become active again.

Ngāti Maniapoto Māori iwi (tribe) in Aotearoa New Zealand

Ngāti Maniapoto is an iwi (tribe) based in the Waikato-Waitomo region of New Zealand's North Island. It is part of the Tainui confederation, the members of which trace their whakapapa (genealogy) back to people who arrived in New Zealand on the waka (canoe) Tainui. The 2006 New Zealand census shows the iwi to have a membership of 33,627, making it the 7th biggest iwi in New Zealand.

Kawhia Harbour Place in King Country, New Zealand

Kawhia Harbour is one of three large natural inlets in the Tasman Sea coast of the Waikato region of New Zealand's North Island. It is located to the south of Raglan Harbour, Ruapuke and Aotea Harbour, 40 kilometres southwest of Hamilton. Kawhia is part of the Otorohanga District Council. It has a high-tide area of 68 km2 (26 sq mi) and a low-tide area of 18 km2 (6.9 sq mi).

Māngere Suburb in Auckland Council, New Zealand

Mangere, is one of the largest suburbs in Auckland, in northern New Zealand. It is located on mainly flat land on the northeastern shore of the Manukau Harbour, to the northwest of Manukau City Centre and 15 kilometres south of the Auckland city centre. It is the location of Auckland Airport, which lies close to the harbour's edge to the south of the suburb.

Māngere Mountain mountain in New Zealand

Māngere Mountain is a volcanic cone in Mangere, Auckland. Located within Māngere Domain, it is one of the largest volcanic cones in the Auckland volcanic field, with a peak 106 metres (348 ft) above sea level. It was the site of a major pā and many of the pā's earthworks are still visible. It has extensive panoramic views of Auckland from its location in the southeastern portion of the city's urban area. It is also known as Te Pane o Mataaho.

In Māori tradition, Ngātoro-i-rangi (Ngātoro) is the name of a tohunga (priest) prominent during the settling of Aotearoa by the Māori people, who came from the traditional homeland Hawaiki.

Panmure Basin bay in Auckland Region, New Zealand

The Panmure Basin, also sometimes known as the Panmure Lagoon, is a tidal estuary within a volcanic crater or maar in New Zealand's Auckland volcanic field. It is located to the south of Panmure town centre.

North Head, New Zealand headland in Devonport, New Zealand

Maungauika is a volcano forming a headland called North Head at the east end of the Waitematā Harbour in Auckland, New Zealand, in the suburb of Devonport. Known for its sweeping views over the harbour and the Hauraki Gulf, since 1885 the head was mainly used by the military as a coastal defence installation, which left a network of accessible old bunkers and tunnels as its legacy, forming part of the attraction. The site was protected as part of Hauraki Gulf Maritime Park in 1972 and listed as a Category I historic place in 2001. As part of a 2014 Treaty of Waitangi claim settlement the volcanic cone was officially named Maungauika and the reserve renamed Maungauika / North Head Historic Reserve. Maungauika is the Māori word for Mountain of Uika.

Kura Te Waru Rewiri is a New Zealand artist, academic and educator of Ngāti Kahu, Ngāpuhi, Ngāti Kauwhata, Ngāti Rangi descent. In Te Puna, Māori Art from Te Tai Tokerau Northland, Deidre Brown writes, "Kura Te Waru Rewiri is one of Aotearoa, New Zealand's most celebrated Māori women artists."

Mangere Lagoon lagoon in New Zealand

Mangere Lagoon is a lagoon in the Manukau Harbour, New Zealand. It occupies a volcanic crater or maar which is part of the Auckland volcanic field. Oval and about 600m long, it has a small restored scoria island remaining in the centre.

The Auckland Region of New Zealand is built on a basement of greywacke rocks that form many of the islands in the Hauraki Gulf, the Hunua Ranges, and land south of Port Waikato. The Waitākere Ranges in the west are the remains of a large andesitic volcano, and Great Barrier Island was formed by the northern end of the Coromandel Volcanic Zone. The main isthmus and North Shore are composed of Waitemata sandstone and mudstone, and portions of the Northland Allochthon extend as far south as Albany. Little Barrier Island was formed by a relatively isolated andesitic volcano, active around 1 to 3 million years ago.

Ihumātao locality in New Zealand

Ihumātao is a Māori village, situated three kilometres from Auckland International Airport in Mangere, Auckland, New Zealand.

Mount Saint John (New Zealand) mountain in New Zealand

Mount Saint John is a volcanic scoria cone in Epsom, in the Auckland volcanic field of New Zealand. It has a peak 126 metres above sea level and a crater around 150 m wide. It was the site of a pā, and has retained Māori earthworks from that era such as kumara pits and terracing. The age of Mount St John is currently unknown but is older than 28,500 years old as the scoria cone is mantled in ash from Te Tatua-a-Riukiuta volcano.

Taylors Hill volcano in Auckland, New Zealand

Taylors Hill, is a volcano in the Auckland volcanic field. It erupted about 33,000 years ago.

Mount Albert (New Zealand) mountain in Auckland, New Zealand

Mount Albert is a volcanic peak which dominates the landscape of Mount Albert, a suburb of Auckland.

Diggeress Rangituatahi Te Kanawa was a New Zealand Māori tohunga raranga of Ngati Maniapoto and Ngati Kinohaku descent. At the time of her death she was regarded as New Zealand's most renowned weaver.

Te Tatua-a-Riukiuta

Te Tātua-a-Riukiuta is a volcano in Three Kings, New Zealand that erupted 28,500 years ago. The volcano had three prominent peaks and a number of smaller peaks until most of them were quarried away, leaving a sole remaining large peak.

Te Ākitai Waiohua

Te Ākitai Waiohua is a Māori iwi of the southern part of the Auckland Region of New Zealand.


  1. "Home". Te Motu a Hiaroa Charitable Trust. Retrieved 10 September 2020.
  2. "1000 Māori place names". New Zealand Ministry for Culture and Heritage. 6 August 2019.
  3. Engineering to 1990 - IPENZ, Engineering Publications Co Ltd, Page 9
  4. Redemption near for Puketutu - City of Fire, insert magazine in The New Zealand Herald , Friday 15 February 2008
  5. Rehabilitating Puketutu Island with biosolids (Watercare. Accessed 2020-06-16.)