Â©Tamara Voninski. Maori boys perform a Haka, traditional war dance for men who were launching a Maka, traditional war canoe in Waitangi, New Zealand on Waitangi Day. There is currently a renaissance of traditional Maori culture in New Zealand. Maori children are taught their language and customs by elders. In 2005, the New Zealand government passed the controversial Seabed and Foreshore legislation to prevent Maori from claiming exclusive ownership of New Zealand2019s resource rich coastline and seabed. The Maori traditionally see themselves as caretakers of the land and coastline. The Maori population is approximately 530,000 of four million New Zealanders.