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The wero is an aggressive challenge of the visitor at the beginning of the welcome ceremony, known as the pōwhiri. Three Māori warriors advance towards the guests and perform threatening gestures and grimaces. A warrior armed with a taiaha (traditional fighting staff), then offers a symbolic offering - usually a leaf fern frond, to the visitor. After accepting the token of peace placed on the ground, the visitors proceed to the next part of the highly structured welcome.
© David Noyes 2011