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Ngaruroro River

The Ngaruroro River is Hawke’s Bay’s 4th largest river with a surface area of 1,950 square kilometres. The catchment’s headwaters emerge in the Kaweka Ranges (north) and the Ruahine Ranges (south). The river has a mean annual flow of 42.146 cumecs, measured at the NIWA site at Chesterhope Bridge in the lower catchment.  This catchment includes the Karamu Catchment which drains a large part of the eastern Heretaunga Plains.

The upper half of the Ngaruroro catchment is predominantly in DOC estate forest park or plantation forestry. The remainder of the catchment is in low hill, pastoral farming with many vineyards in the mid to lower reaches. Some peri-urban/commercial development is also near the river on the lower reaches. The river environment has a cool, wet climate.

The river has good quality habitat for most of its length with riffles, pools and bends and a predominantly large cobble or cobble streambed.

A wide range of fish species is present in the Ngaruroro River, including many native fish which have high value as mahinga kai (traditional Māori food) and a world class trout fishery. Fish species include Cran’s bully, common bully, giant bully, koaro, inanga, dwarf galaxiid, smelt, shortfin eel, longfin eel, torrentfish, lamprey, koura, yellow eyed mullet, black flounder (patiki), rainbow trout and brown trout.

It is included in the TANK Plan  - standing for the Tutaekuri, Ahuriri, Ngaruroro and Karamu catchments on the wider Heretaunga Plains - which is well underway in looking at new policies for managing land and water.   

Sites 11

Monitored sites in the Ngaruroro River catchment

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