Māori have distinct cultural knowledge, values, and perspectives that establish rights, responsibilities and relationships with flora and fauna. There is an increasing recognition from scientists, practitioners, environmental managers, policy makers and others that mātauranga Māori, and working with Māori communities, enhances our understanding of ecology and provides valuable perspectives and frameworks to guide research, management and policy development.
Manaaki Whenua’s researchers are first authors on three of the 14 papers in the special issue, which cover subjects as diverse as kaitiakitanga and urban ecological restoration, use of Te Reo in taxonomy (the naming of species), an investigation of the toxin tutin in rodent pest control, and a conservation partnership to save a New Zealand native frog.
This is the first time that the journal has produced a Mātauranga Māori issue. The abstract of each paper has been translated into Te Reo. Editorial work over the past year has been led by Manaaki Whenua researcher Dr Priscilla Wehi, with a team of expert ecologists who affiliate to iwi throughout the country, and who themselves work with mātauranga and partner with Maori communities.
Our researchers are indebted to Cate Macinnes-Ng, the President of the New Zealand Ecological Society, who was instrumental in bringing this special issue to life.
The event is being sponsored by Manaaki Whenua - Landcare Research, the BioHeritage National Science Challenge, Te Pūnaha Matatini Centre of Research Excellence and the Centre for Biodiversity, University of Auckland.