Te Wai Māori Trust is pleased to announce the appointment of two new Co-Chairs to tuna advisory group, Te Mana o ngā Tuna.

Erina Watene (Waikato-Tainui, Ngāti Maniapoto, Ngāi Te Rangi), is a freshwater scientist with a background in tāonga species research and an Alternate Director on Te Wai Māori Trust’s Board. She is joined by Erina Wehi-Barton (Rereahu, Maniapoto). A member of Te Mana o ngā Tuna since 2022, Erina has spent the last 10 years establishing rangatahi and whānau initiatives teaching te mana o ngā tuna in Maniapoto through pūrākau and observing the behaviours of awa and tuna.

We look forward to your leadership and support in our efforts to protect this taonga species.

We’d also like to take this opportunity to thank our two outgoing Chairs, Ben Potaka and Charlie Bluett. Both passionate and knowledgeable kaitiaki in this space, they’ve played a significant role in establishing this roopu and its role in advocating for tuna.

Te Mana o Ngā Tuna was formed in 2017 in response to iwi concerns about the plight of longfin and shortfin tuna. Te Mana o Ngā Tuna act as an advisory group to Te Wai Māori Trust, providing specific knowledge, experience and advice that advocates for the protection of tuna and supports iwi who are working to do likewise.