Lakes

Latest news

Visitors to NIWA’s stand at this year’s Fieldays are invited to go diving into the Rotorua lakes—without having to get wet.
NIWA researchers are out on Lake Whakatipu for the next week mapping the lake floor for the first time.
NIWA discusses, in depth, this year's most asked question—what is happening to our fresh waterways?
NIWA researchers have spent part of the last month keeping a close eye on the bottom of Lake Tekapo to find out what it looks like and what is going on below the lake bed.

Our work

This research project aimed to understand the causes behind differences in mercury in trout and other organisms in the Bay of Plenty/Te Arawa lakes—in particular what features of each lake explain why mercury in trout is higher in some lakes than in other lakes.

NIWA recently hosted visitors from Northland to view cultivated plants from Lake Ōmāpere that are now ‘extinct in the wild’, and discussed plans for their reintroduction to the lake in the future. 

The ability to properly manage our freshwater resources requires a solid understanding of the flora and fauna which live in and interact with them.
This project aims to increase our knowledge of aquatic ecosystems and their restoration, and apply this to degraded streams, rivers, lakes and estuaries.

Latest videos

Diving deep to check up on our lakes

NIWA scientists jump overboard to check out the health the Rotorua Te Arawa lakes. The work is part of NIWA's national LakeSPI programme—an ecological health check for lakes throughout New Zealand. 
Underwater research to protect and maintain New Zealand's freshwater resources.

This project aims to increase our knowledge of aquatic ecosystems and their restoration, and apply this to degraded streams, rivers, lakes and estuaries.
Diving deep to check up on our lakes

NIWA scientists jump overboard to check out the health the Rotorua Te Arawa lakes. The work is part of NIWA's national LakeSPI programme—an ecological health check for lakes throughout New Zealand. 
Underwater research to protect and maintain New Zealand's freshwater resources.

Freshwater Update 81 brings you the latest information from our Freshwater & Estuaries Centre, with articles ranging from how NIWA scientists are solving the longfin eel migration mystery, how we're taking you diving with us at Fieldays, and a word from one of the editors of the new Lakes Restoration Handbook.

Visitors to NIWA’s stand at this year’s Fieldays are invited to go diving into the Rotorua lakes—without having to get wet.
NIWA researchers are out on Lake Whakatipu for the next week mapping the lake floor for the first time.

Freshwater Update 80 brings you the latest information from our Freshwater & Estuaries Centre, with articles that cross a broad spectrum of freshwater research. This edition has articles about the sources of plastics in our waterways, the discovery of long-lost lake plant species and a breakthrough in research about freshwater mussels/kākahi.

Freshwater Update 79 brings you the latest information from our Freshwater & Estuaries Centre, with articles ranging from NIWA working with NASA; restoring a stream catchment in Kaikōura; looking after urban water; keeping soil and reducing sedimentation; to culling catfish.

The value of archived biological collections: understanding the lake snow invasion

The diatom (Lindavia intermedia) that causes lake snow—nuisance slime in clean-water lakes that ruins angling and can block water intakes—was apparently introduced to New Zealand shortly before 2002, but was widespread by 2005. To obtain a clearer picture of when this diatom arrived in New Zealand, Otago Regional Council (ORC) commissioned NIWA to search archived diatom data and collections.

NIWA discusses, in depth, this year's most asked question—what is happening to our fresh waterways?
Once you have identified the problem, and applied the necessary tools for restoring kōura to your stream, the next phase of your project is to monitor the site to see whether restoration works.
The tools available for restoring kōura to lakes and streams depend on what is causing kōura to decline.
Habitat and biological factors factors affect why kōura rare or absent in your waterway.
First, determine if kōura should be present in your stream.
Identifying the factors causing kōura numbers to decline will allow you to determine which restoration tools you need to employ.
Habitat degradation and the introduction of exotic plant and fish species have adversely affected kōura populations throughout New Zealand. However, there are a number of measures that we can use to restore kōura populations in lakes, rivers and streams.

Launch at lake for weed management plan

Forty dignitaries and agency representatives gathered at Lake Karāpiro to officially launch a management plan for hornwort prepared for Land Information New Zealand (LINZ) and a stakeholder group by NIWA. The plan is aimed at reducing the nuisance impacts of the submerged weed hornwort (Ceratophyllum demersum) at this world-renown aquatic sporting venue. NIWA worked collaboratively with LINZ, Waikato Regional Council, Waipa District Council, local iwi and Mercury in developing lake weed management goals and objectives for the next ten years.

Freshwater Update 71 brings you the latest information from our Freshwater & Estuaries centre, including stories about: the implications of climate change on our freshwater; blocking nature to nuture a lake ecosystem; nine new freshwater and estuaries research programmes; and all about a co-development workshop for freshwaters.

This research project aimed to understand the causes behind differences in mercury in trout and other organisms in the Bay of Plenty/Te Arawa lakes—in particular what features of each lake explain why mercury in trout is higher in some lakes than in other lakes.
NIWA researchers have spent part of the last month keeping a close eye on the bottom of Lake Tekapo to find out what it looks like and what is going on below the lake bed.

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All staff working on this subject

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Freshwater Fisheries Ecologist
Principal Scientist - Aquatic Pollution
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Environmental Monitoring Technician
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Freshwater Fish Ecologist
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Environmental Scientist
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