"Twenty-seven members of the Winnemem Wintu tribe were given an official welcome at the Rehua Marae in Christchurch yesterday.
The tribe has a spiritual connection with the salmon and believes fish populations have fallen since its native McCloud River was blocked by a dam in the 1940s.
The South Island quinnat population is derived from eggs exported from the McCloud River in California by the United States Government.
Tribe members will hold a ceremony on the banks of the Rakaia River next week, calling on the quinnat salmon to return to the rivers of their homeland.The salmon were taken and sent around the world - no one asked the indigenous people, no one even considered what they might have to say. And the same where the salmon were sent. Did anyone ask maori about whether they wanted salmon introduced?
"The ceremony will include an apology to the fish for not fighting harder to stop the dam that affected the McCloud River.
The trip was prompted after Sisk-Franco met commissioner Karen Johansen, of the New Zealand Human Rights Commission, at the United Nations in New York.
Johansen contacted fellow commissioner Richard Tankersley in the South Island, who put the native Americans in touch with Ngai Tahu.This is making a good result from a bad situation. Colonisation and the destruction of habitat, via dams and other disgraces, for people and all life has occured. Plants and animals have been rerooted and planted in other areas. It is right to offer apologies and blessings to these displaced creatures.