Vol.13 No.2 - June 2005

Kiwi kids spend a lot of time outdoors, in and out of school. Scientists have begun to measure schoolchildren’s UV exposure and are compiling a database that can answer a lot questions. Read about it in "How much UV are New Zealand schoolchildren getting?".

In this issue

  • (no image provided)

    Eye in the sky: tracking harmful algal blooms with satellite remote sensing

    PDF of this article (642 KB)
    Hoe Chang, Ken Richardson, Michael Uddstrom, and Matt Pinkerton combined ground observations and satellite remote sensing to track algal blooms on the northeast coast of New Zealand in 2002.
    The dramatic appearance of a ‘red tide’ algal bloom at Leigh, near Cape Rodney. (Photo: M. Godfrey)
    Microalgae are tiny, free-floating marine plants. They are the ocean’s primary producers and form the basis of marine food webs.
  • (no image provided)

    In the poo: can riparian buffers reduce microbial contamination of waterways?

    PDF of this article (313 KB)
    Rob Collins describes a series of field experiments that has helped to determine when and where riparian buffer strips can reduce faecal contamination of streams and lakes.
    Faecal contamination of waterways poses a health risk to swimmers and can restrict shellfish aquaculture in estuaries. It can also be unhealthy for stock drinking the water. Droppings from grazing livestock can be an important source of microbes, including Campylobacter, Cryptosporidium oocysts, Giardia cysts, pathogenic E. coli, and Salmonellae.
  • (no image provided)

    Bubblegum corals from New Zealand seamounts and the deep sea

    PDF of this article (324 KB)
    In his study of the octocorals in NIWA’s National Invertebrate Collection, Juan Sánchez has identified eight new species of bubblegum corals, representing half the known species now recognised in the family Paragorgiidae worldwide.
    Bubblegum corals are octocorals belonging to the phylum Cnidaria, which also includes stony corals and jellyfish.
  • (no image provided)

    Water harvesting: an ideal use of floodwaters?

    PDF of this article (289 KB)
    Through an inventory of New Zealand dams, Alistair McKerchar, Ude Shankar, and Murray Hicks have mapped water storage patterns and have begun to investigate the ecological effects of holding back the flood.
    The Loganburn Dam for the Maniototo Irrigation Scheme in the headwaters of the Taieri River. (Photo: A. McKerchar)
    Water harvesting involves storing floodwater in reservoirs for irrigation or stockwater during dry periods. Such storage ranges from small farm dams to large reservoirs servicing districts.
  • (no image provided)

    1. Yellow Submarine

    PDF of this article (385 KB)
    Down to the depths in a Yellow Submarine
    The submersible Pisces V is lowered from the deck of RV Ka’imikai-o-Kanaloa.
    Views from the submersible. (Click to enlarge and for detail)
    In a joint US/NZ expedition, NIWA scientists spent April and May exploring the flanks of nine seamounts that form part of a chain running from the Bay of Plenty to Tonga.
  • (no image provided)

    2. Courses - Stream Team - New books

    PDF of this article (324 KB)
    Courses at NIWA
    Managing coastal hazards
    Richard Gorman sets the scene by describing Raglan’s wave climate.
    Terry Hume (centre, in shorts) engages the participants in a discussion of the morphology of Wainui Beach.
    Tex Rickard describes some of the problems his simple, but effective, fascines have helped remedy. (Click for enlargement)
    On a sparkling day in March, a small crowd of regional council staff, planners, and engineers took an educational stroll along Raglan’s Wainui Beach.
  • (no image provided)

    3. TCCON - Greenland

    PDF of this article (105 KB)
    Total Carbon Column Observing Network (TCCON)
    Brian Connor and John Robinson make fine adjustments to the Fourier Transform infrared spectrometer at NIWA in Lauder.
    Thanks to a grant to NIWA by the International Investment Opportunity Fund (IIOF), New Zealand has joined the United States, Australia, and Germany in the newly established TCCON.
  • (no image provided)

    4. Fish survey

    PDF of this article (383 KB)
    Update on NIWA survey of fish communities in mangroves and seagrass meadows
    Images from the communities survey. (Click to see more)
    During March and April, NIWA completed large-scale sampling of mangrove fish communities in estuaries on both North Island coasts: Rangaunu, Mangawhai, Mahurangi, Waitemata, and Tauranga in the east, and Kaipara and Manukau in the west.
  • (no image provided)

    5. Climate change comp - Reef lessons

    PDF of this article (264 KB)
    New Zealand Schools Climate Change Competition
    NIWA is a sponsor of an exciting new competition set to engage young people in the critical issue of climate change. Other sponsors include BP, RSNZ, GNS, and Futures Thinking Aotearoa.
    Sample output from the climateprediction.net program.
    The competition, which runs until early November, gives students the opportunity to take part in a global scientific experiment. Students first download and run the climateprediction.net computer modelling experiment on a home or school computer.
  • (no image provided)

    Microscopic magic : algae in subalpine wetlands

    This new poster poster is available from NIWA Science Communication for $20. Email [email protected] or phone 0-4-386 0300. (Click to enlarge)
  • (no image provided)

    Cathy Kilroy: sleuthing for diatoms in New Zealand fresh waters

    PDF of this article (217 KB)
    From pristine alpine tarns to slime-filled lowland streams, the great outdoors is Cathy Kilroy’s favourite laboratory. Since joining NIWA in 1992 as an editor and a science technician, she has logged as much time as she can investigating fresh waters in situ.
  • (no image provided)

    Breathing sediments: microbes, waves, and hidden animal pumps

    PDF of this article (410 KB)
    Kay Vopel and Greig Funnell look into the mechanisms and creatures that help maintain the seabed’s life-support system.
    Aquatic sediment provides an important ecosystem service: the decomposition of organic matter and the associated regeneration of nutrients for algae and plants. In coastal marine ecosystems, more than half of the nutrients available for primary production in the water column and at the sediment surface can be supplied by the sedimentary processes of aerobic and anerobic decomposition.
  • (no image provided)

    Reading between the lines: estimating rainfall for data-sparse catchments

    PDF of this article (224 KB)
    Richard Turner, Andrew Tait, Roddy Henderson, and Ross Woods have found a way to fill in the gaps when data are few and far between. The quality of the water in New Zealand’s lakes, rivers, and streams is a matter of great national importance. Increasingly, water-quality information derived from hydrological models is being used to help decide the fate of resource consent applications where degradation of waterways is an issue.
  • (no image provided)

    Using Water & Atmosphere in your classroom

    PDF of this article (62 KB)
    One of NIWA’s aims with this magazine is to contribute to science education in New Zealand. To this end we distribute Water & Atmosphere without charge to New Zealand high schools. Most of the magazine’s articles are assigned ‘Curriculum Connections’ to indicate which of the NZ NCEA Achievement Standards they can complement as a classroom resource.
  • (no image provided)

    How much UV are New Zealand schoolchildren getting?

    PDF of this article (369 KB)
    Caradee Wright, Greg Bodeker, and Tony Reeder have created a unique database that links sun exposure to school children’s day-to-day activities, knowledge, and attitudes about keeping sun-safe.
    A game of soccer on a sunny day. (Photo: S. Greene)
    Enjoying lunch in the midday sun? A game of tennis after school? How much solar ultraviolet (UV) radiation does a child receive while participating in these and other, often routine, activities?