Hotspots in the North Island are currently found in Aupouri Peninsula, interior Manawatu-Whanganui, and interior Hawke’s Bay. South Island hotspots are currently found in interior Marlborough, a small area near Christchurch, coastal southern Canterbury, and a portion of Stewart Island.
Across the North Island, soil moisture levels generally changed little during the past week. In the South Island, increases were observed along most of the West Coast, interior Otago, and Marlborough Sounds, while decreases occurred in Stewart Island.
Across the North Island, soil moisture levels decreased in big parts of the island during the past week due to meagre rainfall. In the South Island, soil moisture decreases were observed across much of the island.
A weekly update describing soil moisture across the country to help assess whether severely to extremely dry conditions are occurring or imminent. Regions experiencing these soil moisture deficits are deemed “hotspots”. Persistent hotspot regions have the potential to develop into drought.
Many of New Zealand's rivers, lakes and estuaries are in a degraded state, restricting their ecosystems and the services they provide for society - abundant fish, desirable places for recreation, safe drinking water for humans and livestock.