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Waikanae Creek

Waikanae Stream holds historic and cultural significance even though it has a small catchment area of approximately 7 km2 .

Waikanae Stream headwaters are near the Gisborne airport and the Makaraka racecourse. It then passes through light industrial and residential planning zones before discharging near the mouth of the Turanganui River.

The banks of the Waikanae stream have been the location of several landfills prior to the 1960s and community efforts to restore the Mauri of the stream are beginning to see some progress.

Several groups and schools have participated in riparian planting and annual stream clean-up days. A recently completed cycleway and walkway provides more access to the stream and there is now a bridge linking Awapuni primary school with a large part of the pupil catchment area.

The water quality has been recorded at two sites for a limited range of parameters with emphasis on bacterial monitoring. The Grey street bridge site is included in the LAWA data as it provides the best range of data.

Gisborne City wastewater treatment plant is located near the banks of the Waikanae Stream. This locality offers some opportunity to consider the level of treatment and potential discharge of treated wastewater into Waikanae Stream. Alternative use and disposal projects associated with the Wastewater Plant include: a Biotrickling filter, a pilot floating wetland and reuse of trade waste water from specific commercial use such as water that has been used to wash horticultural produce. The reuse of horticultural washing water is being considered for discharge onto golf courses and may provide increased flow in the Waikanae Stream if the quality of treated water meets stringent requirements that are appropriate to the proposed re-use of water and the receiving environments.

Sites 1

Monitored sites in the Waikanae Creek 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.


All samples were collected using approved field protocols and have been analysed in accredited laboratories.

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.


E. coli



Black disc





Total Nitrogen


Total Oxidised Nitrogen


Ammoniacal Nitrogen



Dissolved Reactive Phosphorus


Total Phosphorus

Download Data

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

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