Nopera lived at Kaitaia. He became a friend of William Gilbert Puckey, the son of William Puckey, who worked with Joseph Matthews to establish the Church Missionary Society mission station at Kaitaia in 1833.
Nopera signed the Treaty of Waitangi. He stated his understanding of the Treaty as ‘Ko te atarau o te whenua i riro i a te kuini, ko te tinana o te whenua i waiho ki ngā Māori’ (The shadow of the land will go to the Queen [of England], but the substance of the land will remain with us). Nopera later reversed his earlier statement – feeling that the substance of the land had indeed gone to the Queen; only the shadow remained for the Māori.
- Ballara, Angela. "Nopera Pana-kareao". Dictionary of New Zealand Biography. Ministry for Culture and Heritage. Retrieved December 2011.
- Williams, Frederic Wanklyn. "Through Ninety Years, 1826-1916: Life and Work Among the Maoris in New Zealand: Notes of the Lives of William and William Leonard Williams, First and Third Bishops of Waiapu (Chapter 3)". Early New Zealand Books (NZETC).
- "Story: Muriwhenua tribes, Page 4 – European contact". The Encyclopaedia of New Zealand. Retrieved 26 November 2013.
- Cowan, James (1922). "Chapter 6: The Fighting at Omapere". The New Zealand Wars: a history of the Maori campaigns and the pioneering period, Volume I: 1845–1864. Wellington: R.E. Owen. p. 39.
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