*Maaori believe that the appearance of Matariki in the morning sky in the mid-winter marks the Maaori New Year, or Te Maatahi o te Tau.
Our tuupuna (ancestors) would look to Matariki for help with their harvesting. When Matariki disappeared in April/May, it was time to preserve crops for the winter season. When it re-appeared in June/July, tuupuna would read the stars to predict the upcoming season – clear and bright stars promised a warm and abundant winter while hazy stars warned of a bleak winter.
Because Maaori follow the Maaori lunar calendar, not the European calendar, the dates for Matariki change every year.
*Source - Te Wānanga o Aotearoa
Last updated 22 August 2023