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The Tukituki project is about working with landowners and communities living in the Tukituki River catchment in Central Hawke’s Bay, to manage specific water quality issues. Find out about Farm Environment Plans for the Tukituki catchment.
The Tukituki Catchment is one of the larger catchments in Hawke’s Bay covering approximately 2500 Km2. The Tukituki River flows north from southern central Hawke’s Bay 80 km into the Pacific Ocean near Haumoana south of Napier.
The Tukituki River catchment is made up of 17 sub-catchments including the Makaretu, Tukipo sub-catchments to the south, the Waipawa River and the Makara and Hawea sub-catchments to the east.
The Tukituki River is a tupuna awa (ancestral river) and has significant cultural values to Tangata Whenua.
The river is also highly valued for productive uses, providing water for farms and orchards from Central Hawke's Bay through to the eastern corner of the Heretaunga Plains. Despite significant modifications, the Tukituki Estuary has high fisheries and wildlife values, and is listed as a Significant Conversation Area in the Hawke’s Bay Regional Coastal Environment Plan.
The Tukituki River tends to have a build up of periphyton (slime and algae) during warm summer months when water flows are low. This creates an unhealthy environment for fish, river bugs and insects and makes the river unattractive, especially for recreation. The growth of cyanobacteria algae is a concern in some stretches of the river. It can turn toxic and affect human and animal health. Plant nutrients, particularly nitrogen (N) and phosphorus (P), sunlight and water temperatures determine how much slime and algae grows in rivers and streams.
The Regional Council is working with landowners and communities living in the Tukituki River catchment in Central Hawke’s Bay, to manage specific water quality issues. Poor water quality and a decline in natural (biodiversity) values need to be resolved. Tukituki was the first of Hawke's Bay’s catchments to have a plan change to help towards better water quality. The aim is to sustainably manage the land and freshwater to enable recreational use, ecosystem health, safe drinking water, decreased algal growth, enhanced mauri and the use of water for primary production and processing purposes.
The Tukituki Plan is the name of the document which spells out changes to the objectives, policies and rules that apply in the Tukituki Catchment.
The Tukituki Plan sets out the rules and voluntary approaches to improve water quality and reach specific targets. New rules include stock exclusion from permanent and some intermittent streams, Farm Environment Management Plans, and maintaining records for nutrient budgeting. Putting this plan change into practice will take a coordinated effort from the Regional Council, landowners and the community.
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