30 May 2009

Matariki was this week - traditional navigator

7:08 am on 30 May 2009

As people gear up to celebrate the Maori New Year, a traditional navigation expert says they're going to be a little late.

Waatea News reports official celebrations start when the constellation Matariki or Pleiades rises above the horizon after the next new moon on 24 June.

But Jack Thatcher, who steers by the stars on the waka Te Aurere, says his whanau celebrated Matariki on this week's new moon.

He believes the conditions for Matariki falling in May happen every three to five years.