2006 the Tûhoe population was 32,670. Only about 5,000 Tûhoe
reside in the tribal homelands. Most live in the larger cities, and the
towns on the fringes of Te Urewera – Murupara, Rotorua, Whakatane, Gisborne
and Wairoa. Auckland, Wellington and Hamilton have long-established Tûhoe
groups where members support each other and maintain the cultural practices
and links to home. Tûhoe was the first tribe to build marae outside
their traditional tribal boundaries for this purpose. The first was Mataatua
Marae in Rotorua (on land gifted to the iwi by Te Arawa). The second marae
was Te Tira Hou in Panmure, Auckland.
Tûhoe has maintained
permanent communities within Te Urewera National Park. Encampments are
still established on small pockets of Mâori land within the Urewera.
Whânau continue food-gathering activities practiced by their ancestors
for hundreds of years. The tribe is involved in restoration programmes
for endangered native birds – the kiwi in the southern Te Urewera around
Waikaremoana, and the kokako in the north-eastern Te Urewera around Waimana.
Tourism initiatives by members of the tribe have been active for many years,
providing much-needed income.
The Mâori language
is strong; according to 2001 statistics, 40% of the tribe are fluent speakers
of Mâori, the largest proportion of any tribe.
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Iwi o Tûhoe
Mâtauranga o Tûhoe