Local Govt | National News Video | Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Search


Fish & Game joins with Ecan in river monitoring initiative

Fish & Game joins with Ecan in river monitoring initiative
12 July 2017

North Canterbury Fish & Game is joining forces with Environment Canterbury to buy a key device for monitoring the health of the Hurunui River.
The two organisations will purchase a $14,000 NICO real time nitrogen data logger – a device that will measure the waterway’s nitrogen levels at set intervals every 15 minutes.
The fixed position data logger will be the first of its kind to be used in Canterbury, and one of the first in New Zealand. It will enable the Hurunui River to be precisely monitored around the clock for the first time.
Fish & Game and Ecan have been concerned about the state of many Canterbury rivers for some time.
A 2015 Ecan report found 67% of spring-fed streams on the plains are in poor condition with a further 40% of lowland streams in poor, or very poor condition.
The Hurunui River can be classed as moderately polluted for an alpine river, and has been the subject of much debate over the state of its water quality along with nitrogen and phosphorous levels; Fish & Game has requested increased monitoring of both contaminants.
Currently nitrogen recordings are taken monthly as part of the State of the Environment (SOE) Monitoring Programme carried out by ECan and NIWA.
North Canterbury Fish & Game Chairman Trevor Isitt says being able to use a real-time logger is a major step forward in allowing the collection of accurate data because daily and weekly variations will be recorded.
Mr Isitt says it will help the local community as “Fish & Game staff work with rural communities on an almost daily basis, and it came to our attention that we needed to help the community achieve some clarity over water quality issues.”
“Because the Hurunui River has nationally significant recreation, tourism and amenity values, Fish & Game is happy to put our money where our mouth is and fund half the cost of this device.”
Fish & Game was forced to bring in a winter fishing ban on some North Canterbury rivers in 2016 because deteriorating water quality meant fisheries were on the verge of collapse. The aim was to protect some rivers from decline and to allow others with environmental problems, time to recover.
Anecdotal evidence provided by the Rural Advocacy Network indicates the closure may have been successful, with reports of trout being sighted preparing to head to their spawning streams.
“Most of these fish would have migrated up the river from lower reaches from May onwards; their spawn timing is in line with other catchments in the North Canterbury region at present.
“I wonder if there would have been as many in this pod if we had continued to allow angler harvest of these pregnant trout, laden with thousands of eggs, to be taken out of the catchment over the past two winters?
“It is pleasing that these impressive prime brown trout brood stocks have been left protected to spawn undisturbed by our own anglers,” he added.
The progeny of this brood stock trout is imperative to the regeneration, of not only the Hurunui River trout populations but probably other East Coast sea-run and lowland brown trout populations, Mr Isitt says.
He notes that the purchase of the NICO data logger may encourage more intense monitoring of other contaminants on this river, in order to better understand existing trends, such as an intensive phosphorus monitoring programme.
“The gathering of this data should ensure the Hurunui River receives the attention that it deserves so that all fish species including natives can thrive.”

© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Back Again: Government Approves TPP11 Mandate

The Government has approved a negotiating mandate for Trans-Pacific Partnership 11 (TPP11), which will ensure New Zealand businesses remain competitive in overseas markets.

Trade Minister Todd McClay says New Zealand will be pushing for the minimal number of changes possible to the original TPP agreement, something that the remaining TPP11 countries have agreed on. More>>




Gordon Campbell: On Why Labour Isn’t Responsible For Barnaby Joyce

As a desperate Turnbull government tries to treat the Barnaby Joyce affair as a Pauline Hanson fever dream – blame it on the foreigners! We’re the victims of the dastardly New Zealand Labour Party! – our own government has chosen to further that narrative, and make itself an accomplice. More>>


Rail: Greens Back Tauranga – Hamilton – Auckland Service

The Green Party today announced that it will trial a passenger rail service between Auckland, Hamilton and Tauranga starting in 2019, when it is in government. More>>


Housing: Voluntary Rental Warrant Of Fitness For Wellington

Wellington City Council is partnering with the University of Otago, Wellington, to launch a voluntary Rental Warrant of Fitness for minimum housing standards in Wellington, Mayor Justin Lester has announced. More>>


Treaty: Agreement In Principle Signed With Moriori

“The Crown acknowledges Moriori was left virtually landless from 1870, hindering its cultural, social and economic development. The Crown also acknowledges its contribution to the myths that the people of Moriori were racially inferior and became extinct." More>>


Susan Devoy: Call For Inquiry Into State Abuse Reaches UN

Race Relations Commissioner Dame Susan Devoy is in Geneva and has asked a United Nations committee to urge the New Zealand government to initiate an inquiry into the physical and sexual abuse of children and disabled people held in state institutions. More>>


(Not National): Cross-Party Agreement On Pike River Re-Entry

The commitment was signed this afternoon by the leaders of Labour, United Future, The Maori Party, and the Green Party and, together with the earlier commitment by New Zealand First, means that there is now a Parliamentary majority behind the families’ fight for truth and justice. More>>






Featured InfoPages

Opening the Election