The Karearea is a powerful, swift, medium-sized bird with long fingered wings, a long tail, a short hooked bill and long sharp talons. The Karearea has been protected since 1970, as it is the only falcon, and indeed, the only remaining bird of prey endemic to New Zealand. Primarily a bird of the forest and bush, loss of habitat by human encroachment has severely reduced its range and driven it to settle in remote regions. Unlike the larger Kahu (Australasian Harrier), the Karearea does not normally eat carrion, preferring to feed on birds caught on the wing. It kills with a “tooth” on its beak, unlike most falcons which kill with their claws.
Renowned for its ferocity and aggression, to the old time Māori it was considered that a warrior who wore a Karearea plume was asserting that he had the attributes of the bird. Many tribes also believed the Karearea was brought to earth as captive by Tāne and its designated role was to be envoy to and from the gods.
Te Rarawa, Ngāti Paoa, Te Ātiawa
Rex Homan was born 1940 in Thames, New Zealand of Māori, Irish and Scottish ancestry. He lived in Auckland in his early years before moving to the Bay of Plenty. Rex has earned international recognition as a wood sculptor in the 1960s and 1970s and began working in bronze in the 1980s. His current work is influenced by the culture of the Pacific and displays uniqueness in its diversity of form and dramatic flow of lines. Rex has exhibited in solo, group and jury shows. He has won several national awards for “National Wood Skills” and is represented in corporate and private collections worldwide.
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