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Sunday, May 20, 2007

Kiwi Riverman has a new member to his team.

The Kiwi Riverman has a new member to his team, " Down by the Huttriver" can be found on  http://peter.petterson.blogspot.com this is the local blogsite for the Lower Hutt City area.

This will cover local issues, important matters,  controversies, and local government. This year is election year for local bodies and boards. I will post articles here  at "Down by the Huttriver" and make reference in Letters to the Editor.

 If you are resident in Lower Hutt City, in the Wellington region of New Zealand, this can be your forum to comment to; please be polite.

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Posted by: kiwipete
Monday, March 5, 2007

A history of New Zealand - from East Polynesia to mainland New Zealand.

An oyster-shell fishing lure shank

An oyster-shell fishing lure shank

Haast's eagle attacking a moa

Haast's eagle attacking a moa

A gourd used by Māori

A gourd used by Māori

A homeland region

At the time of New Zealand settlement there was a voyaging and trading sphere in East Polynesia where ideas and cultural traits were shared and spread. All the available evidence of artefacts, language, biology and tradition suggests that this was the Māori homeland. It consists of the Society Islands, the southern Cook Islands and the Austral Islands in French Polynesia.

Even so, specific archaeological evidence is scarce. The shank of a fishing lure of black-lipped pearl shell, found at Tairua in the Coromandel, is one of a very few items from New Zealand archaeological sites that were actually brought from Polynesia.

It is unlikely that the ancestors of Māori came from only one particular location. DNA from New Zealand's Pacific rat shows diverse lineages from the Society and Cook Islands. This suggests that several canoes came from a number of sources. They may have come over several generations, or even centuries. A study of human DNA also suggests that there was a minimum of 70-100 women as founding ancestors. Several canoes, possibly coming from several locations, would be needed to bring this number of people.

Return journeys

For a time, the Kermadec Islands and Norfolk Island were occupied as stopover points for canoes returning to East Polynesia. There is also evidence of direct New Zealand-Norfolk connections. But when voyaging slowed, these stepping-stone islands were abandoned. They became part of the group of ‘mystery islands' that showed evidence of habitation, but were empty when Europeans arrived. Once they stopped returning to Polynesia, the settlers in New Zealand were cut off from the outside world.

A temperate land

Polynesian ancestors of the Māori arrived to a vast, cool archipelago covered in forest, with abundant wildlife. There were moa species (weighing from 20 to 250 kg) and other now extinct native birds including a swan, a goose, and Haast's eagle (the world's largest), probably a predator of the moa. Sea mammals, particularly seals, were plentiful on the coast, as were fish and shellfish.

Polynesians introduced the dog and the rat; if pigs and fowl had been on the canoes they did not survive. The settlers also brought with them taro, yam, paper mulberry and the Pacific cabbage tree (Cordyline fruticosa). The kūmara (sweet potato) and gourd were imports from South America via East Polynesia. It was too cold for plants such as coconut, breadfruit and banana.


Next: Why explore?

Related stories from Te Ara

From the 1966 Encyclopaedia

Image & Media Trail


The Story


In this story

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Posted by: kiwipete
Tuesday, February 13, 2007

Fiji wins its first IRB Sevens tournament of the year - knocks New Zealand out of finals again.


The IRB World Sevens moved to San Diego in southern California, USA, last weekend.New Zealand, Fiji, Samoa and France made the cup semi-finals.New Zealand and Fiji squared off in one semi-final and Samoa and France in the other.France had upset South Africa in their quarter final.

History repeated itself when Fiji knocked the six times IRB Champions New Zealand out of the finals berth. Samoa did the same to the French.

The final between Fiji and Samoa was really an anti-climax with Fiji turning the tables on the Wellington Sevens winner, Samoa last weekend.

After four rounds of the IRB Sevens Championship there have been four individual tournament winners: Dubai, South Africa; George (South Africa), New Zealand; Wellington (New Zealand), Samoa; and San Diego(USA), Fiji. New Zealand and Fiji jointly lead the points table halfway through the championship.

New Zealand were until a year ago unbeaten in the IRB Championship, having won six out of six, but Fiji won last year.New Zealand's reign at the top of the Sevens tree ended because they have continuosly lost their best Sevens players to the 15-a-side Super 14 professional rugby franchises.Only at the Commonwealth Games were New Zealand's top players made available, and they won the Gold Medal in the finals of that tournament.

As a consequence world rugby is unlikely to see the power and skills of New Zealand teams being almost unbeatable as in the past.If a Sevens player shows his ability he will be snapped up by the Super 14 franchises the next season.Sevens rugby has become the national sport of Fiji and that nation appears to be the dominant force in future.

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Posted by: kiwipete
Monday, January 29, 2007

New Zealand is no longer the sleepy hollow that was closed at weekends - a clean and green country moves on to the 21st Century !


New Zealand is no longer the sleepy hollow that was closed at weekends -  a clean and green country moves on into the 21st Century.

There was a time I still remember rather nostalgically as a ten year old boy, when visitors to these green and beautiful shores would rather facetiously claim that NZ was closed down on the weekends. These were carefree days - like it or lump it; we lived on a sheep's back and had the second or third highest per capita living standard in the whole world. We welcomed American servicemen occasionally - two American dollars didn't match a Kiwi Pound (the exchange rate was seventeen and sixpence, or a dollar seventy five) and we saw new drinks called Coca Cola and Pepsi Cola, and American Ice Cream; Kiwi ice cream was and still is better than the American variety.

We had Saturday shopping at suburban New Brighton in Christchurch, and later there was the same at Paraparaumu out west on the Kapiti Coast up from Wellington.Those two places shut down on Mondays instead.You could go swimming or sunbathing at the beach and go shopping on the way home. No supermarkets or shopping malls those days, thank God!

The major cities weren't overpopulated either. Immigrants came mainly from Britain and some from Holland those days. Over the ditch in Aussie Italian immigrants thought they were a weird mob, and Greek fishermen and fish shops were probably ten to one more than the Kiwi variety. We had tens of millions of sheep with a human population of just over two million; crime stats included 1-2 murders for the whole country, and New Zealanders left their doors unlocked when they went shopping.

Rugby Union, as now,netball and cricket were the most popular sports, basketball was an oddity, but there was some softball introduced by visiting American servicemen at the Antarctic "Deep Freeze" Base in Christchurch, which spread north eventually.Rugby league has always been a minor sport here; we actually introduced the sport to the Aussies early in the 20th Century.

Kiwis were always good athletes who developed a number of world class runners in the 1960's and 70's, people like triple gold medalist Peter Snell and 5,000 metre gold medalist, Murray Halberg and of course, another Olympic Gold Medalist, John Walker a little later on in the 70's. Of course we competed well in Commonwealth Games too, but left all the swimming to the Aussies who learned to swim extra fast at their shark infested beaches. LOL.

We loved the outdoors as well - swimming at the beaches and our pristine rivers, great trout and salmon fishing; hunting in the bush and mountains; boating; picnicking and camping out too in the holidays. There was no competition from television those days. We kids went to the morning or afternoon movies, the "pictures" we called them then, and watched all the serials and cowboys and Indians films. Native Americans just doesn't have the same ring to it? These were great pastimes and great times for Kiwi kids and Kiwi adults too!

Not any more I'm afraid. Some time after Britain joined the Common Market and the fabulous 1960's arrived along with The Beatles, and then the Vietnam War, things changed, New Zealand changed, western society changed, and the world changed forever.Kiwis still do all the great things I described, we are still a great sporting nation - the All Blacks rugby side is still the best all round national team, and we still love to kick our Aussie cousins in the backside occasionally, outside of rugby. We have won the Americas Cup twice, to Aussies once - and we had to rescue our Aussie cousins in one race when their boat sank! I don't think they have ever reclaimed that boat; its still in Davy Jones' Locker. LOL

We have come out of our shells as a nation, matured as a society and joined the rest of the western world in a whole manner of things that are described in the annual statistics.Our population has doubled to four and a quarter million since the wonderful fifties. We don' rank among the leaders in the per capita stakes anymore, but regardless of greenhouse gases and global warming of today, we are still one of the greenest places around. The clean and green image is pretty well earned, but we have our moments.

As a Kiwi recently it has been the images of dead and maimed children that are nightmarish, the body in a suitcase floating in Auckland Harbour; or poor little Liam, the ADHD affected 17 year old youth murdered in a security van on the way to a remand prison; or the local quad bike rider who ran into New Zealand's most wanted murderer the other week and never went home to his young children. These are stories I have written and posted in recent months. I have another to write about in coming days. There were other shocking stories I could have, but didn't write about.

There is a common thread running through these stories of mine about murders occuring in the land we once called Godzone. We as a developed and growing western society have to accept the fact that drugs are rampant in our society, as elsewhere in the west. "P" a form of methamphetamine is a factor in nearly every one of these homicides. Another fact is that cannabis/ marijuana has been the gateway drug for all of these meth. involved murders! That is a fact!

I hope you enjoyed my little nostalgic look into my beloved country's past.Have a happy day and happy blogging!

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Posted by: kiwipete
Thursday, December 28, 2006

Australians destination of choice is New Zealand - latest statistics show!

Australians destination of choice is New Zealand - latest statistics show!

It's not Britain, Canada or the United States but New Zealand as the top destination for those Aussies leaving permanently.

Last year 13,915 Australians stated they intended to settle in New Zealand. During the same period 19,003 New Zealanders moved to Australia.

A total of 67,853 people left Australia permanently during the 2005-2006, up from 62,606 the previous year and 59,078 in 2003-2004, Australian Immigration Department figures showed recently.

Britain was the second most popular destinations for Australians(12,040), followed by the United States(6,987), Hong Kong(5,379), China(3,952), and Singapore(3,600).

However,one in five migrants to Australia were from Britain.

The latest statistics highlighted Australia's popularity as a migration destination.

Increased immigration and emigration showed the global labour market was becoming more competitive every year.

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Posted by: kiwipete
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