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Te Kura O Hato Hohepa a Kamura Programme Delivery, 2020

In 2020 Whitebait Connection Programme Coordinator Rosie, delivered a programme to Te Kura O Hato Hohepa a Kamura. The school had previously engaged in a programme in 2014. As part of their programme in 2020 the students went on trips to the kura wetland and the Pupuke River for freshwater investigations.

The Whangaroa catchment in which the kura wetland sits in is made up of 36 % regrowth native bush, 55 % shrubland that includes mixed farmland with some plantation forestry, 8% estuarine which is mainly covered in mangroves and only 1 % of freshwater wetlands.The planted cabbage trees and flax around the kura wetland has been a great step to restoring this precious wetland. There is potential for the tamariki and their whanau to be engaged in a long-term project to monitor their kura waterways regularly, reporting data back to NIWA. The wetland can be further restored through planting more native grasses on the waterway banks and trees further back as well as increasing water flow through unclogging the waterway.

The stream investigation started with testing the health of the small stream that flows through the kura wetland at the bottom of the Whangaroa catchment, and this stream flows out across the road, into the Whangaroa Harbour. 

Here are the students results from their testing at the wetland stream: 

  • Habitat Assessment - The students noticed that there could be more trees planted on the stream bank to provide shade for the stream and stop any erosion of the bank
  • Water Temperature - 23.5 degrees celsius 
  • Electrical Conductivity - 220 µS/cm
  • Water Clarity - 28-40cm 
  • pH - 7-7.5
  • Macroinvertebrates - beetles, dobsonfly larvae, woody cased caddisflies, back swimmers, freshwater shrimp and snails
  • Fish - Common bullies and elvers (juvenile tuna) were caught. The pest fish gambusia was also caught

Macroinvertebrate sampling at the wetland

As a comparison site, the students also tested the Pupuke River health. This waterway flows down from the nearby mountains and out into the Whangaroa Catchment. 

Here are the results from the testing at the Pupuke River: 

  • Habitat Assessment - It was noticed that there were many instream habitats, with riffles, runs and pools present, lots of trees provided shade over the river and there was no erosion present on the river banks
  • Water clarity - 85cm
  • pH - 7-7.5
  • Electrical conductivity - 190 µS/cm
  • Water Temperature - 19.6 degrees celsius 
  • Macroinvertebrates - freshwater shrimp, damselfly larvae, dragonfly larvae, woody cased caddisflies, stony cased caddisflies and snails
  • Fish - inanga and common bullies were caught 

Measuring water clarity at the Pupuke River