Streams

About

There are five permanent streams that enter Whakaraupō/Lyttelton Harbour: Purau, Te Wharau, Waiake, Te Rapu (Teddington), and Living Springs (Allandale). There are numerous other small streams that flow during the wetter months but are dry in summer. Pūkeko share the area with tuna (eels), caddisfly, stonefly, mayfly, pūhā (watercress), and kōura (freshwater crayfish), among others.

Current state

Headwater springs and upper stream reaches in the Whakaraupō/Lyttelton Harbour catchment are largely healthy. But as the streams get closer to the harbour they start to deteriorate. Monitoring shows high levels of sedimentation and phosphorous; E. coli and nitrogen are also present. Many lowland streams within farmland are unplanted and unfenced, meaning stock can enter them. This increases erosion and pollution, via animal effluent. Many interested parties have been working to improve water quality by completing riparian planting on public land, while private owners have sought to do the same.

Our vision

The long-term plan for these streams is to enhance the riparian margins and water quality to a state where sensitive species are present.

Actions

See how we aim to improve streams

The Whaka-Ora Healthy Harbour plan will focus on waterway pollution, bank erosion and stock access. The specific actions will target the five permanently flowing streams and will build on the riparian fencing and planting that has occurred thanks to engaged community groups and landowners.

Key Focus Areas

The Whaka-Ora Healthy Harbour plan uses four Key Focus Areas that will restore the ecological and cultural health of Whakaraupō/Lyttelton Harbour as mahinga kai. They are erosion and sedimentation, pollution, terrestrial indigenous biodiversity, and marine indigenous biodiversity. The Key Focus Areas were identified based on feedback from the community, consultation with Tangata Tiaki from Rāpaki, and recommendations from a science advisory group.

Priority project

  • (1.1) Continue to support a ki uta ki tai re-vegetation and habitat enhancement initiative on all permanently flowing streams commencing with Te Wharau (Charteris Bay), Purau, Waiake (Teddington), Te Rapu and Waimawete (Living Springs/Allandale) Streams.
  • (1.6) Develop an integrated, multidisciplinary programme to target erosion and sedimentation in Whakaraupō/Lyttelton Harbour. This will include:
    •  Mapping key sediment sources and erosion hotspots.
    • Monitoring the locations and rates of erosion.
    • Monitoring the rates of sedimentation in the streams and the sea
    • Supporting landowners with advice and actively addressing hotspots.
    • • Promoting best practice erosion and sediment control techniques (erosion and sediment control toolbox, Builders Pocket Guide) for use in Whakaraupō/Lyttelton Harbour for rural, residential, industrial, roading, agricultural, forestry, and construction

Within three years

  • (1.9) Implement best practice erosion and sediment control techniques by ensuring they are adopted by all land owners and that all properties greater than 40 ha have an operational Farm Environment Plan (FEP) that addresses erosion and sedimentation.

Four years plus

  • (1.12) Review statutory and non-statutory regional/city planning documents, strategies, and bylaws to determine if they appropriately manage erosion and sedimentation for Whakaraupō/Lyttelton Harbour.

Within three years

  • (2.4) Encourage and undertake riparian planting and/or fencing to exclude stock from waterways, initially for all permanently flowing streams.

Four years plus

  • (2.5) Identify and promote pollution control practices that are appropriate for use in Whakaraupō/Lyttelton Harbour to manage water quality effects associated with:
    • Septic tanks
    • Non-consented water takes
    • Stormwater and wastewater discharges
    • Vessels
    • Port operations
    • Contaminants from other sources such as roads, roofing, carparks and pest plant control techniques
    • Industrial sites
    • Rainwater tanks
  • (2.7) Review statutory and non-statutory regional/city planning documents, strategies, and bylaws to determine if they appropriately manage discharges into Whakaraupō/Lyttelton Harbour waterbodies and to ensure they are aligned with the Whaka-Ora, Healthy Harbour plan.
  • (2.9) Review existing waste management practices within Whakaraupō/Lyttelton Harbour and develop an appropriate catchment-wide waste management programme, including:
    • Education
    • Continuing regular ‘harbour clean-up days’ to remove litter from beaches and waterways

Priority project

  • (3.2) Publish indigenous planting guides for Whakaraupō/Lyttelton Harbour to support the community in increasing native biodiversity.
  • (3.3) Continue to support a ki uta ki tai re-vegetation and habitat enhancement initiative on permanently flowing streams as set out in Action 1.1, and expand this where appropriate, to capture riparian margins on all streams.

Within three years

  • (3.4) Develop a landscape scale biodiversity plan to guide habitat protection, restoration, planting, and pest management priorities within the catchment for mahinga kai and other species. This should include developing guidelines and education material including:
    • A landscape plan identifying existing habitat and potential connections between patches
    • Native plant biodiversity, weed control, and other appropriate planting for residential and publicly accessible land
    • Sourcing plant stocks and working with local nurseries
    • Options to improve protection of mahinga kai and native biodiversity values e.g. covenanting, customary harvest
    • Pest plant and animal species management
  • (3.5) Encourage new community led planting and pest plant management initiatives in Lyttelton, Rāpaki, Governors Bay, and Diamond Harbour.

Four years plus

  • (3.6) Develop a pā harakeke in an accessible location.
  • (3.7) Develop, implement and support new and existing initiatives that improve awareness of the cultural and ecological value of native biodiversity, such as:
    • Interpretation panels 
    • Information leaflets
    • School resources
  • (3.8) Review support for existing community planting initiatives and pest plant management programmes and seek to support continued momentum.
  • (3.9) Ensure that appropriate management tools are in place to restore and rehabilitate priority areas for mahinga kai and native biodiversity.
  • (3.11) Provide support for the Lyttelton Pest Management and Biodiversity Improvement Programme aimed at environmental education to connect schools with the community/experts/organisations to develop and implement a monitoring and management programme to eradicate pests and improve biodiversity long-term.
  • (3.13) Review statutory and non-statutory regional/city planning documents, strategies, and bylaws to determine if they appropriately manage biodiversity and pests in the Whakaraupō/Lyttelton Harbour catchment and to ensure they are aligned with the Whaka-Ora, Healthy Harbour plan.

Within three years

  • (5.7) Prepare a mahinga kai and habitat map including terrestrial and freshwater ecosystems and update every five years.
  • (5.9) Bring together all existing freshwater, harbour, and sediment quality monitoring information, and provide an integrated state of water quality report based on existing monitoring, for integration into a state of Whakaraupō/Lyttelton Harbour report.
  • (5.10) Develop and implement an integrated freshwater and marine water quality monitoring programme based on the findings of the state of Whakaraupō/Lyttelton Harbour report.

Four years plus

  • (5.11) Develop a prioritised list of pollutant research projects and actions based on the findings of the state of Whakaraupō/Lyttelton Harbour report.
  • (5.12) Identify key pollution sources and contaminants, and their relative effects on fresh water and marine water quality.
  • (5.14) Develop and pilot new tools, and review and update existing tools, where required for landowners and users, on best practice erosion and sediment control techniques within Whakaraupō/Lyttelton Harbour, including a cost-benefit analysis of how erosion and sedimentation control can fit into a suite of viable land use alternatives.
  • (5.16) Investigate tools to manage the spread of wilding pines, such as buffer plantings.
  • (5.17) Investigate opportunities for and support existing community led monitoring programmes.

What is being done?

Check out projects that are already contributing to fulfilling the vision of Whaka-Ora Healthy Harbour

More info

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