PA2008_056_d.jpg Ferdinand costume (about 1956). Collection of Puke Ariki (PA2008.056).

Donning amber and black and bringing home the Ranfurly Shield is a dream of many young Taranaki footy players – one that Ferdinand has been there to see. Ferdinand was born in 1953 on the backs of Geoff Bendall and Murray Mitchell. Literally… after one Ranfurly Shield win Ferdi carried three players, including Ross Brown, off the field.

Many fans can remember the crowd roaring out the chant:

Ferdinand, Ferdinand, with your fifteen men

Play the game, guard our name, ruck and bowl again

Let victory’s gleam shine on our team

In this land, you are grand, Ferdinand.

Although this Ferdinand is now retired, a two-legged bull still claims the field at Yarrow Stadium. In 2015 the team officially adopted the name ‘Bulls’ in honour of their mascot.

Related Information


Search the Puke Ariki Heritage Collection


Please do not reproduce these images without permission from Puke Ariki. 
Contact us for more information or you can order images online here.