Debris dam construction on Taharoa Trust

The Taharoa team have decided to make the most of the low water levels in the Mangatupae stream by constructing a series of debris dams.  The Mangatupae catchment is actively eroding and the stream bed has dropped by 3 metres over the past 30 years.  The goal of the debris dam is to help stabilise and rebuild the stream bed by trapping the silt.  This structure will be just one of the many tools used to reduce erosion.  Last year, 2 bush blocks were fenced off and retired (5 ha).  This coming winter we will attempt to fence off another 5 ha bush block with a fence line bladed to retire the stream.

Further up in the headwaters, a new soil conservation trial is underway with native trees protected by a new guard.  Our hope is that all these tools will contribute towards finding a positive outcome for our freshwater quality and our biodiversity.  Erosion control will be a long term battle so we will keep you posted on any further developments.

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Pongaroa Station signing

We are delighted to announce that Pongaroa Station have signed the conservation management agreement.  This covenant agreement is an important way of protecting funder investment for a 25 year period.  Pongaroa Station are the third landowners to sign the agreement and significant in terms of their land size.  Pongaroa station have signalled their commitment to more conservation work by involving the QE2 Trust.  The station is currently investigating retiring and fencing off 40 hectares of native bush blocks around the farm with the assistance of QE2.  Watch the space over the next few years…

Water monitoring update

On the 8th of may, HBRC undertook a fish monitoring survey on the Whangawehi on the Taharoa Trust, just behind the shelter. Water was a bit high and coloured but the survey should give a good idea of population health in a stock free environment (fenced off in 2014). We are all waiting for a report but Arthur noticed a high number in small eels with an increasing number of short fin eels. An uncommon bully was found also.

The latest water monitoring at Mamangu is available : April2017

Water monitoring run

On Thursday the 3d, Arthur Bowen carried out a water monitoring run and observed a lot of changes along the river. The most encouraging observation was a school of 200 white baits swimming in the stream up in the forest. White baits were observed in the Mangatupae stream as well…the project is working! The river banks are also starting to grow abundant crops of water cress…indicating that the Mahinga kai is definitively returning.  Water clarity was extremely good with no alguae growth observed yet.

Water monitoring at Whangawehi

On Tuesday, Arthur Bowen undertook his water monitoring run as part of the Whangawehi Catchment water monitoring plan. This month, Arthur carried out the Macro Community Invertebrate Index which is a way of assessing the health of a stream by studying and following the communities (or bugs) that live in it. This study is carried out every year and we hope that over time our ” bugs” will tell us how healthy is our Awa.

Arthur observed some very low water levels for the season with some algae growth in places. White baits and native fish were observed in small numbers.