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Dairy farmer Brent White says the meteor he saw on early Saturday morning was "spectacular".
A Manawatu farmer has discovered the importance of carrying a cellphone after he saw a spectacular fiery meteor display but couldn't get a photo.

Dairy farmer Brent White saw the "spectacular" meteorite fly right in front of him at around 4:30am on Saturday when he was bringing cows into the dairy shed.

"I'm hoping someone else saw it... I didn't have my phone on me unfortunately."

Mr White says he ran back to the shed to see if the milk tankers at the shed had seen the meteor, but they were busy working and missed it.

"It was spectacular. It was surreal. It was such a clear morning... and all of a sudden at about 4:35, out of my left eye I saw a bright light.

"It was definitely a meteor; it was a ball-like formation with a vortex."

Mr White says it was only about 250 meters in the sky and had a "bluish-type" flame.

"I was shocked. It was shooting right in front of my face.

"If there was a tallish building it would have hit it."

Within seconds the meteor exploded, disintegrating into four or five pieces, Mr White says.

He says the sky was very clear and he would often see the Milky Way and constellations, but he had never seen anything like this before.

"It was the best light display I've ever seen.

"I'll definitely be remembering this one."