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Hutt River at Kaitoke

The Hutt River at Kaitoke is monitored by NIWA as part of the National River Water Quality Network (NRWQN) and is located in Kaitoke Regional Park. The site is publicly accessible from Kaitoke Water Works Road. 

This site is monitored as part of a programme specifically designed to measure the health of rivers and streams in the Wellington Region. This involves monitoring of water quality (see the 'Scientific Indicators' tab below) as well as the aquatic invertebrate communities, i.e, the insects and bugs that live in the riverbed (see the 'Ecology' tab below). 

Monitoring the different variables that affect water quality is carried out monthly. This involves the assessment of water clarity, nitrogen and phosphorus concentration, dissolved oxygen, pH and the concentration of the bacteria Escherichia coli (E. coli). The Macroinvertebrate Community Index (MCI) classifies the site based on the number of and different types of macroinvertebrates living there and is measured annually.

Overall, water quality is generally good at this site. This is a reflection of the surrounding land cover (which is dominated by indigenous forest) and the fact that it is hard-bottomed, (made up of cobbles and gravel). In contrast, sites that have poor water quality tend to be soft-bottomed, meaning that the stream or riverbed is sandy or silty, and surrounded by pastoral or urban land.

For more information on Greater Wellington Regional Council's environmental monitoring programmes, check out the latest water quality reports.

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