River water temperatures (OND)
Freshwater Update 64, February 2015
Freshwater Update 64 brings you the latest information from our Freshwater & Estuaries centre, including water quality maps and information, as well as river flows.
Nitrogen is a key nutrient element for aquatic plants, similar to terrestrial plants. Nitrogen, along with phosphorus, is routinely measured in waters to test their nutrient status and the likely promotion of nuisance plants or algal growths.
Monitoring of periphyton (algae) in rivers is important because, although rivers need some periphyton, too much can be unsightly and harmful to the river ecosystem.
Dams play an important role in generating electricity and providing a reliable supply of water for irrigation but their construction also has significant environmental consequences.
The National Policy Statement for Freshwater Management (NPS-FM) 2014 (NZGovt 2014a) is the latest in a series of freshwater reforms that is significantly changing the way in which freshwater resources are managed in New Zealand.
This ‘new’ freshwater management, and in particular setting of freshwater objectives and limits, requires integration at a number of scales, including integration of:
Waitao Stream flows from native forest headwaters into Tauranga Harbour’s Rangataua Bay, crossing the locally iconic Kaiate Falls on the way.
New Zealand’s cities are built next to streams, rivers and harbours, but urban development has resulted in the degradation of these water bodies.
New Zealand’s native freshwater fish fauna is dominated by the galaxiid genera, of which there are currently thirty recognised taxa. Of these, all but two (Galaxias maculatus and G. brevipinnis) are endemic to New Zealand and 96% are classified as either At Risk or Threatened.
Conditions were quite dry across the country, and particularly severe in the South Island. Except for the northern tip of the North Island, where well-above normal flows were recorded, flows were normal to well below normal across the country.