Last year a new species of fresh water golden clam was discovered in the Waikato awa. This invasive species invoked ngā kaitiaki o Waipā, whānau, hapū and iwi to mobilise, to understand and learn about the golden clam.

This movement created an opportunity for Te Nehenehenui to partner with Ngā Pae o Te Māramatanga (NPM), New Zealand's Māori Centre of Research Excellence (CORE), and offer an internship to one of our tribal members. The goal of the renowned NPM Māori Summer Internship Programme is to inspire students to enter higher degree research programmes and continue into research careers. This is an annual 10-week full-time programme, where at least 10 Māori tertiary students are partnered with leading Māori researchers in locations across the country.

Successful intern, Tui Barret (Waikato-Tainui, Ngāti Maniapoto, Kai Tahu) says “this approach in dealing with the clams is going to take collective effort, it’s going to require multiple stakeholders, to really be involved in combatting this.” We would like to acknowledge our partners Biosecurity New Zealand, Ministry of Primary Industries, Ngā Pae o Te Maramangatanga and Mana Whenua for their contributions to this unique research opportunity that has enabled Tui to learn more about this invasive clam from a Te Ao Māori perspective. We also wish Tui well as he completes his studies at Waikato University this year.

“Nā taku rourou, nā to raurau, ka ora ai te iwi”

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