An historian says it is possible two iwi - Waikato-Tainui and Ngāti Whātua Ōrākei - could make a joint claim on parts of Auckland.
In a speech at Turangawaewae yesterday, the Māori King, Tuheitia, said he wanted to address, and resolve, the question of sovereignty of the Kingitanga in Auckland.
The new claim covers the area from the Mahurangi Peninsula in the north down to the Firth of Thames, across to the Manukau Harbour and up to Piha on the west coast.
History professor at Auckland University of Technology Paul Moon said Tainui and Ngāti Whātua jointly opposed the Government's recent move to open up land in Auckland for housing, which showed the iwi have been co-operating closely on the issue.
He said it was likely the two iwi had been negotiating for some time and the new claim was part of a joint effort to get their historical rights recognised.
Professor Moon said while new historical treaty claims are not possible, the iwi could claim the Crown failed to recognise Tainui's historical links to Auckland when it negotiated a settlement with Ngāti Whātua.
Hapu watching claim 'very closely'
The chair of Ngāti Whātua Ōrākei, Ngarimu Blair, said the hapu had a long-standing relationship with Tainui and the Kingitanga and acknowledged their interests in parts of wider Auckland.
"However, we will be watching this claim and others very closely," he said.
"Ngāti Whātua Ōrākei has been very accommodating, constructive and flexible in its approach to achieve a settlement for wider Auckland. We just need to ensure new settlements don't undermine the existing settlements of others."
The hapu looked forward to meeting with Tainui and the Crown soon, Mr Blair said.
An iwi based north of Auckland, Ngati Manuhiri, said it did not have any issues with Tainui pursuing a claim.
But Ngati Manuhiri's chief executive, Mook Hohneck, said other iwi and hapu in the region might take a different view.
"I'm sure that it won't all be plain sailing - that there'll be some against and some for."
Ngati Manuhiri had strong connections to Waikato-Tainui, Mr Hohneck said.