30 Jul 2015

No legal action against marae over kereru

1:04 pm on 30 July 2015

The Department of Conservation is not taking legal action against the marae that served kereru to Crown ministers.

The protected wood pigeons were served at a hui of iwi leaders and government ministers at Ohakune's Maungarongo Marae in 2013.

DoC says what happened was possibly a misunderstanding, and it had found no evidence any offence took place.

The department says it has no record of authorising dead kereru for consumption, and is continuing to talk with the local iwi Ngati Rangi about the use of kereru for cultural purposes.

Deputy Director-General Mike Slater said he welcomed recent comments from Ngati Rangi representatives about wanting to work with DoC to rebuild kereru populations.

The Wildlife Act allows DoC to authorise the take of protected species for cultural and traditional purposes, such as the use of feathers in cloak weaving, and it authorises the transfer of dozens of birds to local iwi each year.

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