Progress on Whales’ Teeth

DOC answers allegations over ‘missing’ whale teeth

By Alan Tristram
DOC has replied to our story (see below)quoting ‘rumours among Maori that teeth taken from the whale beached at Paraparaumu recently have disappeared.’In that story, Kāpiti Councillor K Gurunathan (Guru) said he wants the Department of Conservation, as the relevant authority, to reveal exactly where all the teeth have gone.
Matt Barnett DOC’s Community Relations manager DOC has told the Independent: “DOC met this week with Te Atiawa ki Whakarongotai. The whale taonga (treasuer) is in the possession of that iwi.
“They are working on ensuring the jawbone and teeth are appropriately cleaned and prepared.
“DOC will meet again with the Te Atiawa ki Whakarongotai Trust to insure the appropriate permit documentation is completed.”
In his statement earlier this week, Cr Gurunathan said rumours were circulating amongst sections of the local iwi that some of the valuable teeth of the 15-tonne sperm whale, which beached at Paraparaumu Beach on January 16, had gone missing.
Following this, George Jenkins, Whakarongotai Marae chairman, George Jenkins said it was ‘a sensitive issue.'”The teeth are not missing; we believe we know where they are,” he said.

“It is an internal matter.”

Editor’s note: Under the Marine Mammals Protection Act, DOC is responsible for issuing permits for the removal of any material from such mammals. Removal can be for scientific and cultural reasons.

A……. (name edited to avoid a possible libel) was given the teeth to look after.
When a nominated elder asked her where the teeth were she refused the request.
Very simple.
DOC really should call the police.

what a load of crap !, at a meeting of iwi at the marae it was clear that the person looking after the teeth wasnt answering where they were.
And again with this Iwi, the police havnt been called.
Now Doc are being part of the coverup ?!
Nothing like a bit of cultural oversensitivity, again.
Wake up !