The Moeraki Boulders are unusually large and spherical boulders lying along a stretch of Koekohe Beach on the wave-cut Otago coast of New Zealand between Moeraki and Hampden. We showcase some of the very best photos of the Moeraki Boulders and the surrounding area on our Photos page.. Maori legend tells that the boulders are remains of calabashes, kumaras and eel baskets that washed ashore after the legendary canoe, the Araiteuru was wrecked at nearby … Virtually identical spherical boulders, called Koutu Boulders, are found on the beaches, in the cliffs, and beneath the surface inland of the shore of Hokianga Harbour, North Island, New Zealand, between Koutu and Kauwhare points. Maori legend tells that the boulders are remains of calabashes, kumaras and eel baskets that washed ashore after the legendary canoe, the Araiteuru was wrecked at nearby Shag Point (Matakaea). Coleman, B.A. Like the Moeraki Boulders, the Koutu Boulders are large, reaching 3 metres (10 ft) in diameter, and almost spherical. The Moeraki Boulders are unusually large and spherical boulders lying along a stretch of Koekohe Beach on the wave-cut Otago coast of New Zealand between Moeraki and Hampden.They occur scattered either as isolated or clusters of boulders within a stretch of beach where they have been protected in a scientific reserve. In Tasman Bay, off the northern coast of the South Island of New Zealand, you will find Tokangawh? Barreiro and N.T.J. Unlike the Moeraki boulders, some of these concretions contain the bones of mosasaurs and plesiosaurs.[3]. They occur scattered either as isolated or clusters of boulders within a stretch of beach where they have been protected in a scientific reserve. [3][5][6], The most striking aspect of the boulders is their unusually large size and spherical shape, with a distinct bimodal size distribution. These boulders are grey-colored septarian concretions, which have been exhumed from the mudstone enclosing them and concentrated on the beach by coastal erosion. According to Maori legend, the marble-like Moeraki Boulders on Koekohe Beach are the remains of the ancient Araiteuru canoe that crashed into the Otago coast. These cracks radiate and thin outward from the centre of the typical boulder and are typically filled with an outer (early stage) layer of brown calcite and an inner (late stage) layer of yellow calcite spar, which often, but not always, completely fills the cracks. Rare Moeraki Boulders have a very thin innermost (latest stage) layer of dolomite and quartz covering the yellow calcite spar. Most are spherical or almost spherical, but a small proportion are slightly elongated parallel to the bedding plane of the mudstone that once enclosed them. New Zealand locations within the Otago region. These concretions occur as both spherical cannonball concretions and flat, disk-shaped or oval concretions. Their reticulated patterning on the boulders, according to this legend, are the remains of the canoe's fishing nets. Map; Regions; Legend . [1][4], The rock comprising the bulk of a boulder is riddled with large cracks called septaria that radiate outward from a hollow core lined with scalenohedral calcite crystals. After the concretions formed, large cracks known as septaria formed in them. ... also known as Golden Rock, is a well-known Buddhist pilgrimage site in Mon State, Myanmar. Some of the boulders weigh several tonnes and the largest ones can be over 2 metres wide! The outside rims of the larger boulders consist of as much as 10 to 20% calcite because the calcite not only tightly cements the silt and clay but has also replaced it to a significant degree. These boulders are actually concretions that have been exposed through shoreline erosion from coastal cliffs. The picture is now in the Alexander Turnbull Library in Wellington. Other times, such as when storms are rolling in, provide an atmosphere and scene that can’t be matched anywhere else in New Zealand, or the world! [1][3][4][7], Local Māori legends explained the boulders as the remains of eel baskets, calabashes, and kumara washed ashore from the wreck of Arai-te-uru, a large sailing canoe. The Moeraki Boulders range from 5 ft to 7 ft high (1.5 m to 2 m), and pepper the beaches, cliffs, and shoreline throughout Koekohe. 1. Smaller but otherwise very similar septarian concretions are found within exposures of sedimentary rocks elsewhere in New Zealand. [5] The boulders were described in 1850 colonial reports and numerous popular articles since that time. Their spherical shape indicates that the source of calcium was mass diffusion, as opposed to fluid flow. Similar boulder-size concretions, known as Katiki Boulders, are also found on the north-facing shore of Shag Point some 19 kilometres (12 mi) south of where the Moeraki Boulders are found. Approximately one-third of the boulders range in size from about 0.5 to 1.0 metre (1.6 to 3.3 ft) in diameter, the other two-thirds from 1.5 to 2.2 metres (4.9 to 7.2 ft). C. Dann and N. Peat, 1989, Dunedin, North and South Otago. They originally started forming in ancient sea floor sediments around 60 million years ago, and the largest boulders are estimated to have taken about 4 million years1 to get to their current size. Here you will find the mysterious Moeraki boulders, Teapotland, Stonehenge Aotearoa and the Waitomo Glowworm Caves. [9][10], The Moeraki Boulders are concretions created by the cementation of the Paleocene mudstone of the Moeraki Formation, from which they have been exhumed by coastal erosion. The boulders are one of the most fascinating and popular attractions on the South Island. Similar large spherical concretions have been found in many other countries. Detailed analysis of the fine-grained rock using optical mineralogy, X-ray crystallography, and electron microprobe has determined that the boulders consist of mud, fine silt and clay, cemented by calcite. Supposedly this privately-owned island in Nova Scotia sits atop buried treasure or rare artifacts. The Moeraki Boulders lie scattered along Koekohe Beach in New Zealand's South Island. GP Books. The process or processes that created septaria within Moeraki Boulders, and in other septarian concretions, remain an unresolved matter for which a number of possible explanations have been proposed. J. R. Boles, C. A. Landis, P. Dale, Copyright © 2006-2018 moerakiboulders.com All Rights Reserved, The Moeraki Boulders; anatomy of some septarian concretions. But quite a few critics say this theory has no solid evidence backing it up. This is demonstrated by studies of their composition; specifically the magnesium and iron content, and stable isotopes of oxygen and carbon. Even today, there are still boulders remaining in the mudstone that will, eventually, fall on to the beach as they come lose due to erosion! Edward Tregear's The Aryan Maori (1885) suggested that Aryans from India migrated to southeast Asia and thence to the islands of the Pacific, including New Zealand.. Topo50 / 1:50,000; Topo250 / 1:250,000 Watch the video below for a short introduction and some fascinating facts about the Moeraki Boulders! Early morning and late afternoon are the prime times for photography, when brilliant soft sunlight is cast across the rocks; making for spectacular photographic opportunities. The Boulders are a very popular spot for photographers – and with good reason! 11 … [1][3][4], Neither the spherical to subspherical shape or large size of the Moeraki Boulders is unique to them. Vyacheslav Argenberg Getty Images. [7][8] Similar septarian concretions have been found in the Kimmeridge Clay and Oxford Clay of England, and at many other locations worldwide. The Moeraki Boulders are huge spherical rocks on Koekohe Beach on the Otago coast of New Zealand’s South Island. In more recent times they have become a popular tourist attraction. The biggest legend is that a formation of boulders, called “The Money Pit,” which hides treasure from pre-1795 that has yet to be found. The larger boulders, 2 metres (6.6 ft) in diameter, are estimated to have taken 4 to 5.5 million years to grow while 10 to 50 metres (33 to 164 ft) of marine mud accumulated on the seafloor above them. [5], Coordinates: .mw-parser-output .geo-default,.mw-parser-output .geo-dms,.mw-parser-output .geo-dec{display:inline}.mw-parser-output .geo-nondefault,.mw-parser-output .geo-multi-punct{display:none}.mw-parser-output .longitude,.mw-parser-output .latitude{white-space:nowrap}45°20′42.99″S 170°49′33.82″E / 45.3452750°S 170.8260611°E / -45.3452750; 170.8260611. The Moeraki Boulders; anatomy of some septarian concretions. Some of the boulders weigh several tonnes and the largest ones can be over 2 metres wide! Boles, J. R., C. A. Landis, and P. Dale, 1985. Legend has it that millions of years ago, the gods were fighting over a golden apple. References: We showcase some of the very best photos of the Moeraki Boulders and the surrounding area on our Photos page. The erosion by wave action of mudstone, comprising local bedrock and landslides, frequently exposes embedded isolated boulders. ... Legend has it the hills are the dried tears of a heartbroken giant. Cabo San Juan de la Guia Beach, Colombia. ... Maori Legend. The writing of Percy Smith and Elsdon Best from the late 19th century theorised about pre-Māori … [1][2][3][4], In 1848, Walter Mantell sketched the beach and its boulders, more numerous than now. Hudson, J.D., M.L. Appearing like a congregation of planets, the stones, with their sheer size and nearly perfect shapes, give birth to an alien landscape. [1][3][4], The composition of the Moeraki Boulders and the septaria that they contain are typical of, often virtually identical to, septarian concretions that have been found in exposures of sedimentary rocks in New Zealand and elsewhere. Brown calcite, yellow calcite, and small amounts of dolomite and quartz progressively filled these cracks when a drop in sea level allowed fresh groundwater to flow through the mudstone enclosing them. Wellington, New Zealand. The degree of cementation varies from being relatively weak in the interior of a boulder to quite hard at its outside rim. Kai Schworer/dpa/AP. Moeraki Boulders (South Island, New Zealand) ... No, really, they're central to a Maori legend of a disastrous canoe voyage. or Split Apple Rock. This legend tells of the rocky shoals that extend seaward from Shag Point as being the petrified hull of this wreck and a nearby rocky promontory as being the body of the canoe's captain. During the 19th century, ideas about Aryan migrations became popular and these were applied to New Zealand. The boulders are made of mud, clay, and fine silt, and are held together by calcite. The Moeraki Boulders are unusually large and spherical boulders lying along a stretch of Koekohe Beach between Moeraki and Hampden in New Zealand. Whether you're looking for an international locum tenens job, or something closer to home, Global Medical Staffing has the know-how, to get you where you want to go. 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