Story: Ngā manu – birds

Tīwaiwaka (fantail)

Some people consider the tīwaiwaka (fantail) a harbinger of death when seen inside a house. In one story, the bird was responsible for the death of the trickster Māui when he tried to overcome Hine-nui-te-pō, the goddess of death.

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How to cite this page:

Kelly Keane-Tuala, 'Ngā manu – birds - Birds associated with death', Te Ara - the Encyclopedia of New Zealand, (accessed 18 October 2021)

Story by Kelly Keane-Tuala, published 24 Sep 2007, reviewed & revised 17 Feb 2015