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Object: Hïnaki (eel trap)

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Title Hïnaki (eel trap)
Production Unknown (craftsman), 1800-1900, Wanganui
Materials plant fibre
Classification traps
Technique weaving
Dimensions Overall: 1420mm (Length) x 570mm (Width) x 645mm (Height)
Registration number ME008102

Hinaki waharua

Tuna (eels) were a highly prized delicacy for Maori. Hinaki (eel traps) were made by weaving flexible varieties of vine into long cylindrical forms. Because of the inverted design of the trap’s entrance, once lured inside the eel was unable to escape.

The hinaki waharua (two mouths) were made with two entrances, so another lucky eel would have the opportunity to get caught.

Large hinaki were attached in great numbers to large wooden eel weirs, known as pa tuna. These were constructed across the width of a river and could yield hundreds of tuna in a single catch.

He tino kai te tuna ki te Maori. I hangaia te hinaki ki nga tumomo aka ka kitea i roto i te ngahere, a, porotaka ana te ahua. Na te huri koaro o te akura o te hinaki, kaore e taea e te tuna te hoki whakamuri.

I hangaia kia rua nga akura o te hinaki e taea ai te tini tuna ki roto i te hinaki.

I herea atu ai nga hinaki nui ki nga pa tuna, e tu ana i roto i te awa, mai i tetahi taha ki tetahi taha. E hia rau nga tuna mau ai i te wa kotahi i roto i enei tumomo hinaki.

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