Ipipiri ecological survey
The regional council is supporting a project initiated by a group of local researchers, Ngati Kuta and NIWA to survey the ecology of the semi-sheltered waters located between the central Islands of the Eastern Bay of Islands and the Rāwhiti Channel.
The area is thought to contain some of Northland’s best-known examples of algal turf beds, subtidal seagrass and rhodolith beds.
Drop cameras and an underwater video were deployed to survey the area and drone images were collected to help identify habitats on the seabed. The underwater video and photographs have identified extensive beds of turf algae around the islands, extending to depths of 12 metres. Work is ongoing to analyse the images and create a habitat map of the area.