Monitoring background and interpretation
Auckland Council’s State of the Environment (SoE) monitoring programme has been building a record of Auckland’s environment for more than 25 years. This information is critical to the effective management of Auckland’s natural environment, after all, you
can’t manage what you don’t monitor.
The monitoring programme shows there is a strong relationship between the health of rivers and the type of land cover in the surrounding catchment. Rivers that drain through forested catchments (particularly native forests) typically have excellent water quality and ecology, while rivers that drain from urban catchments typically have poor water quality and ecology.
The Waitākere Ranges reporting area is predominantly forested and as a result the health of the area’s rivers is considered to be excellent. Rivers in this reporting area tend to have riparian margins with lots of trees and bush, which provide shade, leaf litter and woody debris to the stream. These additions to the stream enhance the quality of flora and fauna which anchor the stream banks. The absence of urban development means there is very little channel modification or pollution from discharges or stormwater.
Wai Care Waitākare Ranges
Wai Care is a water quality education, monitoring and action programme managed by Auckland Council, for schools and community groups in the Auckland region.
The programme aims to educate people about freshwater issues and encourage and facilitate action in the local community, from water quality monitoring to streamside planting and litter clean-ups.
The following table shows achievements of the Wai Care Programme in Waitākere during the 2013/2014 financial year.
Henderson Valley School’s ‘Stream Team’ meet every term with Wai Care to monitor their local site on the Opanuku Stream. The group of students from years 4 to 6 are experts on their site and have made videos and presentations to share with other students
and the community.
For more information on Wai Care, or to view site data for your area, go to www.waicare.org.nz or call 09 301 0101 and ask for Wai Care.