The large number of small and generally shallow lakes and wetlands in Northland are a precious resource to our region. Many of these are small dune lakes near the coast of which Lake Taharoa north of Dargaville is one of the largest with a few larger volcanic lakes inland such as Omapere and Owhareiti.

These lakes and wetlands provide important habitat for a range of plant and animal species, many of which are regionally or nationally significant. Many of these lakes are also valuable for recreational users, cultural reasons, as water supplies and for their own natural beauty.

Performance targets

· Operate a region-wide water quality network for the measurement, recording and reporting of lake quality trends

· Water quality, weed and algae monitoring of Lake Omapere and associated community liaison and advice, including the ongoing development and co-ordination of a lake catchment management plan

Outcomes for 2005-2006

A Lake Water Quality Monitoring Network for Northland has been developed and water quality monitoring on the 31 lakes in the network started in 2005 -2006. The 2005 – 2006 results showed that of the 31 lakes sampled 71% of them are in a eutrophic state or worse, meaning they have high nutrient and algae levels and poor water clarity.

Ongoing monitoring of water quality, algae, fish and plants in Lake Omapere has been carried out as part of the Lake Omapere Restoration and Management Project.  View results from Lake Omapere

Photo of Lake Omapere.