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Te Matuku

Te Matuku Bay is a coastal embayment located in the southeast of Waiheke Island in the Hauraki Gulf. The bay features extensive intertidal flats and shell banks, along with areas of mangroves and saltmarsh in the upper reaches. This vegetation grades into freshwater raupō wetland, and then into coastal kauri-tānekaha forest. These diverse habitats provide rich feeding and roosting grounds for large numbers of international migratory and endemic birds, including rare and threatened species such as the New Zealand dotterel, bar-tailed godwit, spotless crake, and Australasian bittern.   

The surrounding catchment is rural, with significant areas of native vegetation. Te Matuku Bay is a Department of Conservation marine reserve. An oyster farm operates along the bay’s western shoreline.

 

Estuary summary

What makes my estuary unique?

Explore the characteristics of this estuary

Overview

Estuary characteristics

  • Significant features
    • Department of Conservation marine reserve
    • Te Matuku Bay biodiversity focus area
    • One of Waiheke Islands largest estuaries
    • Within the Hauraki Gulf Marine Park
    • Significant Ecological Area identified within the estuary as defined in the Auckland Unitary Plan
  • Total area
    240 hectares
  • Total shoreline length
    ~9km

What's happening upstream?

See results from monitored river quality sites influencing this estuary

River quality

What's happening upstream?

The physical characteristics and health of estuaries are influenced by the rivers and streams flowing into them. For instance, when it rains the mud and contaminants generated on land can be washed into rivers and eventually flow into the estuary. The health of our rivers and streams can therefore be very important for Estuary Health, and understanding the upstream pressures can help with interpreting estuary monitoring data. Monitoring is undertaken for a range of river health indicators (e.g., water quality and ecology) in many catchments across the region. Where there are monitored river catchments that influence this estuary, these are shown below. You can click through to view monitoring results from these River Quality sites to see current state and how health has changed over time.

What surrounds my estuary?

See land cover information from monitored catchments that surround this estuary

Land cover

What surrounds my estuary?

The physical characteristics and health of estuaries are influenced by local geography and the way we use our land. This is because estuaries are the receiving environments for many of our land use activities. Land cover information can be used as an indicator of land use, therefore knowing the surrounding land cover can help us understand which pressures might be affecting Estuary Health. For example, the sandflats of estuaries surrounded by rural areas will typically contain contaminants related to rural activities (e.g., cadmium from crop fertilisers and copper from fungicides), whereas those surrounded by urban areas are more likely to contain contaminants associated with cities (e.g., zinc and lead from roads and building materials). Where there is land cover information available for nearby catchments, these are listed below. These figures show the types of vegetation and built or natural features that surround the estuary margins and the rivers that flow into this estuary. You can click through to the Land Cover topic to see these land cover classes broken down into further detail, and view changes over time.

Monitored sites 1

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