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Okarahia Stream

The Waiau - Hurunui zone (WHZ) covers an area of 6095 km2 and is home to over 11,500 people. The upper reaches of the catchments are dominated by native vegetation and the middle and lower reaches, particularly the Culverden Basin are dominated by intensive landuse practices such as beef and sheep finishing, cropping and dairying.

Ten sites are monitored in the WHZ as part of Environment Canterbury’s state of environment monitoring programme. These sites represent upper and lower reaches of alpine, hill-fed and spring-fed rivers.

As with many areas in New Zealand, increasing pressure is being placed on our water resources with intensifying landuse and increased demand for water take, with lowland areas being the worst affected. The best water quality is often observed in the upper reaches of rivers where there has been less degradation and anthropogenic activity. The poorest water quality is typically found at sites the further near the coast where waterways are under pressure from increasing landuse intensification.

The upper reaches of the WHZ have high water quality, low nutrient and bacteria concentrations. This is typical of alpine-fed rivers, with natural vegetation dominating the upper catchment. In the lower reaches of the catchment nutrient concentrations and bacterial indicators increase. Sources of bacterial contamination are likely to include the effects of intensive land use in the middle catchment area and birds colonising the riverbed. The bacterial quality of the river at SH1 is often poor during summer, which compromises the recreational value of the river.

Sites 1

Monitored sites in the Okarahia Stream catchment

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Scientific Indicators
Scientific data for this catchment

This dashboard shows information on the data collected by the regional councils for water quality indicators, analysed as state and trend.

The state for the catchment is represented by the median concentration for the parameter across all sites within the catchment and then compares that value to the quartiles for all monitored sites in New Zealand.

Click on the parameters state icons to compare this catchment with others in the region.

  • State

    State shows how the median of samples from this site compares to other sites

  • Trend

    Trend shows how the quality of water is changing over time. Depending on the sampling history duration, five and ten year timescales are available:

Can I trust this data?

The Cawthron Institute has worked alongside regional councils to verify the processes and methods used for data collection, laboratory analysis of samples collected and the statistical analysis and interpretation of the results presented.

If all Cawthron ticks are green, then you can trust this data. However, if one or more ticks are orange, then conclusions should be treated with some caution.

For more details on each tick, see our 'Can I Trust This Data?' Factsheet.

Can I trust the data?
Data Collection

All samples were collected using approved field protocols and have been analysed in accredited laboratories. Therefore the data shown here has been collected and analysed following best practice.

State

All samples were collected using approved field protocols and have been analysed in accredited laboratories. Therefore the data shown here can be trusted.

Trend - Adjustment for flow

This data is not flow adjusted. National guidelines suggest that flow-sensitive variables are flow 'adjusted' before trend analysis. Therefore, any trends shown here may be affected by variations in flow across sampling occasions.

Bacteria

E. coli
State
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Trend
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Clarity

Clarity

Black disc
State
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Trend
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Clarity

Turbidity
State
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Trend
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Nitrogen

Nitrogen

Total Nitrogen
State
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Trend
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Nitrogen

Total Oxidised Nitrogen
State
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Trend
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Nitrogen

Ammoniacal Nitrogen
State
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Trend
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Phosphorus

Phosphorus

Dissolved Reactive Phosphorus
State
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Trend
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Phosphorus

Total Phosphorus
State
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Trend
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Download Data

.ZIP file of indicator readings for all sites in New Zealand
Download
Disclaimer

 LAWA Partners shall not be liable, whether in contract, tort, equity or otherwise, for any loss or damage of any type (including consequential losses) arising directly or indirectly from the inadequacy, inaccuracy or any other deficiency in information supplied irrespective of the cause.  Use of information supplied is entirely at the risk of the recipient and shall be deemed to be acceptance of this liability exclusion.