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Kakanui River

The Kakanui River catchment has an area of 894 km2

The catchment is contained by the Kakanui Mountains and Pisgah Spur (1634m) to the west and south. In the north, the catchment is separated from the Waitaki catchment by rolling hill country. The main tributaries of the Kakanui River are the Kauru River (catchment area 143 km2), Island Stream (122 km2) and Waiareka Creek (213 km2).

Water quality in the upper Kakanui River is excellent.

From its source in the Kakanui Mountains, the Kakanui River flows north-east for about 40 km, through gorges incised in rolling or downland country, before emerging onto plains at Clifton. It then flows south-eastwards at a gentler gradient through highly developed pastures to be joined further down the widening valley by the broad, gravel-bedded Kauru River. It flows into the Pacific Ocean 10 km south of Oamaru.

The Kakanui River’s water resource is heavily used for irrigation purposes. The river has three minimum flow sites to manage water quantity, but recently concern has been expressed about agricultural intensification and subsequent degradation of the water quality.

Over the past ten years, land use in the catchment has intensified rapidly. The lower Kakanui and Waiareka Creek are dominated by a mixture of beef/sheep/deer/cropping and, increasingly, dairy farming, particularly since the introduction of irrigation water into the Waiareka Creek catchment.

During the summer there is weekly monitoring at Clifton Falls. See the Otago Regional Council website for details.

Sites 3

Monitored sites in the Kakanui River catchment

...retrieving sites.

No sites found.

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