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The track follows the estuary margin through corridors of silver beech, fuchsia and kamahi forest to an archaeological site once inhabited by moa hunters.
The start of the track is signposted from the parking area on the eastern side of the bridge over the Tahakopa River.
The even track follows the estuary margin through corridors of silver beech, fuchsia and kamahi forest to an archaeological site once inhabited by moa hunters.
Les Lockerbie, a local archaeologist, first aroused the interest of the Otago Museum into conducting archaeological investigations in the area. The middens have been scoured by archaeologists, who have ascertained through radiocarbon dating, that this camp was a seasonal location for Polynesian settlers between 1000 and 1700 AD. Remains in the midden show that shellfish, fish, penguins, birds and several species of moa formed their diet. Oven stones and shells are still visible in the bank where the estuary has cut away a cross-section.
Archaeologists have determined the Maori inhabitants of the region lived to an average age of 30, were short in stature and often malnourished. Some died of exposure, evidently not suited to the harsher conditions of the southern climate. Shelters were often rudimentary, consisting of small tree trunks and branches lashed together and thatched with wiwi or bush grass.
South Island ▷ Southland ▷ Owaka
Thanks to all the good people working for the NZ Department of Conservation - for all your hard work - making NZ more beautiful, accessable and healthy! Cheers 😍