Visiting whale a 'sign' - Wellington kaumātua

7:26 pm on 6 July 2018

A Wellington kaumātua says the visiting southern right whale in the city's harbour doesn't need a name.

The Southern Right Whale in Wellington Harbour

The Southern Right Whale in Wellington Harbour Photo: Maritime NZ/Mark Dittmer

Kura Moeahu of Wellington iwi Te Ati Awa said the whale was a good sign for the Māori New Year.

The southern right whale first appeared on Tuesday morning and has been captivating Wellingtonians and visitors ever since.

Mr Moeahu said the whale did not need a name but it was important to think about its purpose.

"The key question people should be asking is what is the purpose of the whale coming into the harbour and what is it trying to tell us."

Mr Moehau said he performed a karakia last Friday to mark the start of Wellington City Council's matariki celebrations to welcome the new fruits of the new year.

The Matariki fireworks display has been postponed until next weekend due to the whale.

"Being a strong believer in our culture, I believe it is a sign.

"When we look at the message in the karakia 'there rises matariki, welcome in the new fruits of the new year' this may not be a fruit but it's a new being."

Mr Moehau said the whale was a sign of prosperity, growth, and change to come.

Earlier, RNZ listeners suggested that if the whale were to be named, Swim dot Com, Mirumiru (Bubbles), or She'll be Right Whale could be good options.