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A young adult male tuatara, a native New Zealand reptile, one of the children of Tū-te-wehiwehi

In Māori mythology, Tū-te-wehiwehi (or Tutewehiwehi) is the father of all reptiles, and is also known as Tu-te-wanawana (or Māori: Tū-te-wanawana).


He is a son of Punga and brother of Ikatere.[1][2] Father of Punga was Tangaroa, king of the sea.

When Tāwhirimātea made war against his brothers after they separated Rangi and Papa (sky father and earth mother, ancestors of all gods), Ikatere and Tū-te-wehiwehi had to flee, and Ikatere fled to the sea and became an ancestor of fishes, while Tū-te-wehiwehi took refuge in the forest and fathered lizards.

Before Tū-te-wehiwehi and Ikatere fled, they disputed together as to what they should do to escape from the storms.


  1. ^ Grey 1971:1–5
  2. ^ Ika-tere