The New Zealand Railways Magazine, Volume 12, Issue 1 (April 1, 1937)
Famous New Zealanders.
(Continued from page 11 )
ayne's book “New Zealand Plants and Their Story.” An eminent Continental ecologist, well acquainted with the philosophic importance of Dr. Cockayne's labours, had said: “It is wonderful how Cockayne has interested the population of a new country in botany.”
Referring to this and other great books, Sir Arthur Hill writes that, “there was a strain of poetry in his nature which can be appreciated in his ‘New Zealand Plants and Their Story,’ and it was the poetry in him which lent wings to his imagination and gave depths to his insight.”
As to the depredations of acclimatised animals, Cockayne often sighed for the power to act on the advice Goebel gave him, “to get the fools hanged” before they could introduce such animals as wild goats which would cut up not only the alpine flora but even the forests, as they had in Greece. Alas! the mischief has already been done in many parts of the alpine and bush regions, and the fools have not been hanged. The country is paying for their folly and ignorance.
Hunting The Wild Pig.
New Zealand's reputation as a country for excellent wild pig hunting is well known, as is also the Maori's skill as a hunter of these animals. The flesh of a young wild pig is delicious and the sport is exhilarating, hence the many excursions by both pakeha and Maori into the pig country.
While both the white man and the Maori employ the modern weapons for hunting the pigs, there are still some natives who cling to the old hunting method of a knife and dogs. A well-known Maori pig hunter on the east coast of the North Island is famed for his skill as a pig sticker. He scorns the rifle and relies solely on his dogs and his ability and agility to slip in and deliver the fatal knife thrust. While hunting in the Urewera country not long ago his dogs bailed up a huge boar, and at the opportune time the Maori darted in and fatally knifed the animal. Imagine his surprise when on examining the carcase he discovered deeply embedded in the thick skin near the left-hand front leg about three inches of a knife blade. His surprise was all the greater when on closely examining the blade, which was of an unusual type, he recognised it as belonging to a knife which he had used on a pig several years before and which had snapped off when the pig wheeled just at the knife thrust and escaped.
Further interest is lent to the incident by the fact that when the hunter first tackled the pig years before it was then over 150 miles away from where it was finally killed.—“Wells.”page 50