Southland contains several large, iconic lakes that are
valued highly by people for aesthetic, cultural, recreational and economic
Their unique ecological values are also important for
sustaining land and water-based life. Pressures exist on many of our lakes and
lagoons, from the intensification of surrounding land use, lake side
communities and hydroelectric power. Waituna Lagoon located in Awarua,
Southland, is both nationally and internationally significant. The lagoon was
one of the first sites in the world to be named "a wetland of
international significance" under the RAMSAR Convention.
Where we monitor
Environment Southland regularly monitors indicators of
water quality in Lake Te Anau, Lake Manapouri and Waituna Lagoon. In addition,
spot sampling of water quality has occurred in a number of small, coastal
lakes (i.e. Lake Vincent, Lake George, Forest Lake and the reservoir).
Lake Te Anau
From February 2000 to July 2007, samples were collected every
month in Lake Te Anau (2 sites) and Lake Manapouri (three sites), but since
July '07 monitoring has been conducted quarterly due to the excellent quality
of water. Both lakes are considered natural state waters and have very clean
water. In terms of water quality, they are in the top 10% of lakes monitored
in New Zealand.
Four sites in Waituna Lagoon have been monitored monthly since
August 2003, with earlier monitoring at the East site since Oct 2001. Since
March 2011 there have been changes to the monitoring regime, with increased
sampling occurring when the lagoon closes off from the sea.
Water quality results from our lakes and lagoons are also
compared against national guidelines/standards, and the council's Regional
Water Plan water quality standards and targets.
Where can I view monitoring information?
You can view a wide range of environmental information on
Southland’s lakes and lagoons on the Land, Air, Water Aotearoa website. This website displays state
and trend information for Lake Manapouri and Lake Te Anau,
giving you access to water quality monitoring in a common, easy to understand
format. You can also view sites from around the country.
For monitoring data from the Waituna lagoon, please visit www.waituna.org.nz
Report - Assessment of three lowland Southland lakes using LakeSPI - April 2015
Report - Benthic Cyanobacteria and Anatoxin-a and Homanatoxin-a Concentrations in Five Southland Rivers - October 2010
Report - Development of a South Island Wetland Macroinvertebrate Community Index - June 2010
Report - Ecological Condition of Six Shallow Southland Lakes - July 2012
Report - Environment Southland – Review of SOE Water Quality Monitoring Programme April 2010
Report - Environmental residues of anticoagulants used for pest animal control - June 2013
Report - Faecal Contamination in Selected Southland Rivers and Streams - 2013
Report - Fish Surveys in Non-Wadeable Systems - July 2013
Report - Lake George - Broad Scale Habitat Mapping - February 2013
Report - Lake Murihiku - Broad Scale Habitat Mapping June 2013
Report - Lake Vincent - Broad Scale Habitat Mapping June 2013
Report - NIWA - Design of Stormwater Monitoring Programmes - February 2014
Report - Nutrient loading to shallow coastal lakes - September 2013
Report - Otepuni Faecal Source Investigation Report - September 2012
Report - Potential inanga spawning areas in Southland rivers - December 2013
Report - Regional Scale Stratification of Southland’s Water Quality – Guidance for Water and Land Management - March 2014
Report - Shallow Lowland Lakes Report – Estimates of Reference Conditions - October 2013
Report - Southland Water 2010: Our Ecosystems Technical Report for lakes and lagoons - February 2011
Report - Surface Water Quality Monitoring Programmes - July 2010
Report - The effects of drain clearing on water quality of receiving environments - May 2012
Report - The Reservoir - Broad Scale Habitat Mapping - June 2013
Report - Updating nitrate toxicity effects on freshwater aquatic species -January 2013
Report - Waihopai Catchment Water Quality - 2005 -2006