Ladbrooks Primary School
Forest and swamp land were in the area from Christchurch to Te Waihora through to early Maori times. Te Waihora was said to be the lake with the most resources in the South Island with eels, flounder, mullet, whitebait, freshwater crayfish and lots of wetland birds. There is not only food but also flax and bullrush which was used for making eel traps and bags to carry the fish. Another old name for the Lake is Te kete ika a Rakaihatu. When the Maori came to the lake it would have been twice the size that it is now. Of all resources you can find there, the fish are the most valued.
These are the questions we sent and the answers we got back from Taumutu marae:
Q1.Why is Te Waihora so much smaller now than it was a hundred years ago?
Q2.What would happen to the Maori people if Te Waihora was not there?
Q3.How is Te Waihora important to you and the other Maori people?
Q4.How long have the Maori used the lake?
Q5.What do you use the lake for?
Q6.What have you used Te Waihora for in the past?
Q7.How did the Maori open the lake?
Thanks to Taumatu marae for helping us