Te Whānau-ā-Apanui

Te Whānau-ā-Apanui is a Māori iwi located in the eastern Bay of Plenty and East Coast regions of New Zealand's North Island.[2] In 2006, the iwi registered 11,808 members, representing 13 hapū.[1][3]

Te Whānau-ā-Apanui
Iwi (tribe) in Māoridom
Rohe (region)Eastern North Island
Waka (canoe)Mataatua
Population11,808 [1]


Early history

Apanui Ringamutu's mother Rongomaihuatahi was descended from Porourangi of the Horouta canoe, who was a founder of Ngāti Porou. His father Tūrīrangi was a descendant of Tamatekapua of the Te Arawa canoe, and the Ngāriki people of the Tauira canoe. When Rongomaihuatahi took Apanui to meet his relatives at Ōmāio, they gave land to the boy. Because of his noble ancestry, the people in that area were named after him: Te Whānau-ā-Apanui (the family of Apanui).

During the 17th century, Apanui acquired vast amounts of land along the East Coast of the North Island. Through familial connection, he acquired land from Ngāti Porou and Ngāriki. He was given land extending from Pōtikirua to Puketapu, and from Taumata-ō-Apanui Hawai; the land in between was later won through conquest.[2]

Modern history

Relations with Europeans were not generally hostile. Early European settlers showed little interest in the isolated region, which lacked deep-water harbours for shipping. However, visiting Europeans taught Te Whānau-ā-Apanui the skills of whaling and commercial agriculture. Both areas become major economic industries for the iwi in the early 20th century, and profits were directed into community development projects.

During the 1980s, the iwi experienced economic decline with the loss of major transport services, privatization of state assets and the eventual economic unfeasibility of its small-scale farming operations. This resulted in some emigration of iwi members from traditional tribal homelands.[2]

Hapū and marae

The iwi (tribe) consists of 13 hapū (sub-tribes).

Each is associated with a marae (communal ground) and wharenui (meeting house). Ki

  • Te Whānau a Haraawaka, of Tunapahore marae and Haraawaka wharenui
  • Te Whānau a Hikarukutai, of Maraenui marae and Te Iwarau wharenui
  • Te Whānau a Kahurautao, of Pāhāōa and Kahurautao wharenui
  • Te Whānau a Kaiaio, of Maungaroa marae and Kaiaio wharenui
  • Te Whānau a Kauaetangohia, of Whangaparāōa marae and Kauaetangohia / Te Putahou wharenui
  • Te Whānau a Maruhaeremuri, of Wairūrū marae and Hinemahuru / Mihi Kotukutuko wharenui
  • Te Whānau a Nuku, of Ōmāio marae and Rongomaihuatahi wharenui
  • Te Whānau a Pararaki, of Te Maru o Hinemaka marae and Pararaki wharenui
  • Te Whānau a Rutaia, of Ōtūwhare marae and Te Poho o Rūtāia wharenui, and Rongohaere marae and Rongohaere wharenui
  • Te Whānau a Tapaeururangi, of Pōtaka marae and Te Ēhutu / Te Pae o Ngā Pakanga wharenui
  • Te Whānau a Te Ēhutu, of Te Kaha marae and Tūkākī wharenui
  • Te Whānau a Toihau / Hiinetekahu, of Waiōrore marae and Toihau wharenui
  • Te Whānau a Tutawake, of Whitianga marae and Tūtawake wharenui[3]


Te Rūnanga o te Whānau

Te Rūnanga o te Whānau represents Te Whānau a Apanui during resource consent applications under the Resource Management Act, but forwards each application on to the directly affected hapū. It is based on Te Kaha, and governed by representatives from at least ten hapū.[3]

The charitable trust is involved in social services and local economic development. It manages a fisheries operation, and invests in the development of local forestry and other industries. Its Cyberwaka rural community project provides information technology training.[2]

Negotiations team

The Crown has recognised Te Whānau a Apanui Negotiations Team to represent the iwi during Treaty of Waitangi settlement negotiations. The terms of the negotiation were signed with the Crown in September 2017.[3]

Local government

The tribal area of the iwi is within the territory of the Ōpōtiki District Council.

It is also within the wider territory of Bay of Plenty Regional Council.[3]


Sea 92FM

Pan-tribal iwi station Sea 92FM broadcasts to members of Te Whānau-ā-Apanui, Te Whakatōhea and Ngāitai in the Opotiki area.[4] It is operated by pan-tribal service provider Whakaatu Whanaunga Trust, and is available on 92.0 FM. It operates the low-power Opotiki 88.1 FM, geared towards a young demographic.[5]

Notable people

See also

  • List of Māori iwi


  1. "2006 Census – QuickStats About Māori (revised)". Statistics New Zealand. 2007-04-04. Archived from the original on 2007-09-28. Retrieved 2007-05-25.
  2. Paora, Roka (2006-09-26). "Te Whanau-a-Apanui". Te Ara – the Encyclopedia of New Zealand. Retrieved 2007-04-02.
  3. "TKM Te Whānau a Apanui". tkm.govt.nz. Te Puni Kōkiri, New Zealand Government. Retrieved 21 March 2018.
  4. Carlsson, Sven. "Contractors install the Whakaatu Whanaunga Trust's far-reaching antenna last Friday". Opitiki News. Opitiki News. Retrieved 26 April 2015.
  5. "Iwi Radio Coverage" (PDF). maorimedia.co.nz. Māori Media Network. 2007. Retrieved 14 June 2015.
  6. "Death of Wiremu Karuwha Tawhai". scoop.co.nz. Scoop. Retrieved 26 June 2011.
  7. Helen Robinson (2005), 'Cliff and Dean Whiting: Reviving Restoration', Heritage New Zealand, Winter 2005, p.46
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