Police say they are confident the skeleton found on private farm land in Northland property is not a recent death.
Two boys made the discovery at around 9am on Saturday while playing north of Taupo Bay.
It's not yet known whether the bones are human or how old they are.
There are a number of Maori burial sites in the area.
A police spokeswoman told Newshub the identification process can take up to 12 hours and they're working closely with local iwi as they handle the remains.