mutton bird

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mutton bird

1. any of several shearwaters, having a dark plumage with greyish underparts, esp the sooty shearwater (Puffinus griseus) of New Zealand, which is collected for food by Maoris. It inhabits the Pacific Ocean and in summer nests in Australia and New Zealand Austral
2. any of various petrols esp the short tailed shearwater, Puffinus tenuirostris, which inhabits the Pacific Ocean and in summer nests in S Australia
References in periodicals archive ?
In terms of the letter's contents, Dot remarked that muttonbirding was indeed a 'rough experience' and agreed that five weeks of it would be enough to last a lifetime.
More than two years later, in August 1907, another letter appeared in the DLF pages relating to muttonbirding. This one was from a boy using the penname Irawaru.
It too was about a season's muttonbirding. Because it was written by a 14-year-old schoolchild, it would be too much to say that it was a colonial narrative steeped in romanticism that nonetheless saw itself 'as securely anchored in a rational, resource-oriented scientific and technological paradigm'.
Nana P's account of muttonbirding, written as it was at school, illustrates the continuation of a phenomenon observed by Canon James Stack during a visit to the Native School at The Neck in 1877 where he encountered an essay written about muttonbirding, presumably in English, by one of its pupils.
But we do know this: had she not wanted to draw attention to her Maori heritage and non-European lifeways during her time at secondary school, she would not have written about muttonbirding nor would she have been known as Mouru.
Rather, as I have tried to show, its importance is that it was part of a tradition of Kai Tahu using literacy in English to communicate about muttonbirding, which dated back at least as far as 1877.
The descriptions of muttonbirding offered by Tini, Irawaru and Nana P can, I think, be thought of as examples of travel writing.
Muttonbirding therefore provided fair-skinned Kai Tahu with a means to reinforce their Kai Tahu lineage, highlight enduring tribal lifeways, and assert their continued relevance.