River flood management programme

Why do we manage rivers?

Good river management can help protect people, land and property from damage from flooding.

It can also reduce the impact of erosion and sedimentation, which can improve water quality and habitat for native aquatic plants and animals.

As a regional council, we’re responsible for managing Northland’s rivers, including the effects of flooding and erosion. Well-managed catchments can help minimise erosion and flooding, and benefit our region’s environment and economy.

Graphic - river flooding - June 2021

What’s involved in river management?

Our council proactively manages rivers, working with tangata whenua, landowners, agencies and others to reduce flood hazards. This involves investigative work to understand flood risk, ongoing channel maintenance, and designing and implementing flood protection solutions.

When carrying out this work, consideration is given to river and stream systems as a whole, providing a co-ordinated approach to what happens on the ground.

Good river management includes:

River with vegetation on river bank.
Maintaining vegetation.

Large tree fallen across river.
Clearing obstructions and preventing plants and other objects such as logs, from blocking waterways.

Gravel bank narrows river bed.
Gravel management in some areas.

River with rocks supporting riverbank.
Erosion control.


How can I help manage flood risk on my property?

By working together, Northland Regional Council and landowners can ensure our rivers are healthy and well managed.

Landowners are responsible for normal maintenance of rivers and streams on and around their property.

We can help by:

You can help look after the health of our rivers by:

  • Managing stock to keep them out of rivers and other waterways - Fencing stock out of waterways information
  • Planting vegetation to protect and stabilise riverbanks
  • Maintaining vegetation to prevent waterway obstruction
  • Managing animal and plant pests.
A gravel bar and island are both restricting flow and worsening erosion at this spot on the Waitangi River.

A gravel bar and island are both restricting flow and worsening erosion at this spot on the Waitangi River.