Go with the Flow co-ordinates and links practical, community-led catchment and biodiversity restoration within the Kaipara catchment, our biggest harbour. By working with farmers, communities, hapu / iwi and agencies we can help reduce impacts, improve water quality, clean up the estuary and restore populations of tuna (eels), whitebait and kewai (freshwater crayfish).

Congratulations and thanks to everyone who took part in the 2014 riparian plantings:

  • Kaimamaku Stream, Whakapara. Landholders Mick Kelly and Sarah Granich, Kaimamaku Landcare Group. 1650 plants
  • Pahi River. Maungaturoto. Landholder Les and Vicki Kenworthy-Thompson, Otamatea Harbourcare Group. 1701 plants
  • Okarika Oxbow, Hikurangi Swamp. Landholder Whangarei District Council, Nga Kaitiaki o Nga Wai Maori. 3325 plants
  • Kohinui Stream. Whangarei Heads. Landholder Robyn Bigelow, Kohinui Streamcare Group. 1000 plants
  • Puhipuhi Stream. Landholders Ngati Hau, Akerama Marae. 1252 plants

Go with the Flow is continuing to provide a wide range of practical restoration actions over new and existing sites, combined with support for landholders and connections to the other agencies working in the Kaipara.

Go with the Flow involves:

Riparian fencing & planting: Planting stream banks not only provides a home for wildlife on land, it shades the water and provides better places for aquatic animals to live and breed. Keeping stock out of waterways also helps to reduce nutrient runoff and sedimentation. Streams themselves, and ultimately the estuaries into which they flow, are healthier. In 2015, Reconnecting Northland will work at several sites alongside Otamatea Harbourcare Society, Kaimamaku Landcare Group, Whangarei District Council and Nga Kaitiaki o Nga Wai Maori.

Native freshwater fish restoration:  Whitebait and eels are not only good to eat; they are important cultural taonga for Maori and indicators of healthy waterways. Inanga spawning sites are not yet well understood. By simple field investigations, Reconnecting Northland aims to find out where these tiny fish are returning to breed, and ensure better egg survival and therefore more whitebait. Tuna (eels) also migrate as part of their life cycle. Barriers in rivers like weirs and dams interfere with their movements, so improving or bypassing these is a priority if we are to increase numbers of these long lived fish.

Farm planning: Working with Beef+Lamb NZ, Reconnecting Northland will support landholders to improve water quality on their farms through fencing and planting, as well as helping them to complete farm-wide plans detailing other ways they can improve their farm environment.

Wetland restoration: The restoration of the large wetland complex on Royce Macbeth’s productive dry stock farm will provide a case study for other farms across the catchment. Establishing a kahikatea swamp habitat, addressing siltation issues, and fencing out stock may eventually provide for the return of the nationally endangered Australasian bittern / matuku which were once abundant in the area.

Native forest restoration: Within a commercial forestry blockriparian margins and gully systems are often unsuitable for planting in pines. In this case study, these areas will be replanted with large-scale manuka plots which will also contribute to the subsequent production of manuka honey. This approach is an example of economic diversification with biodiversity benefits – the waterways and wildlife will be improved by replanting of natives, while providing an alternative income stream.

For more information about Go with the Flow, contact:

Email jon.hampson@landcare.org.nz
Phone 09 430 0954