Update – April 2016

The Trust worked with eight community catchment groups to create specific information sheets that capture the aims, challenges and actions associated with each catchment area. While common themes can be found, the case studies are different, reflecting the perspectives of each group.

Project Update – March 2016

Regular catchment group meetings were held involving presentations from ECan staff. Progress is being made in the Sub-Regional Plan process and the Zone Committee, which now meets monthly. Plans are underway for catchment groups to deliver presentations to the Committee on local issues and activities. It is intended that responsibility for delivering presentations would be rotated between the groups.

A workshop was held at Pleasant Point for catchment group facilitators and steering group members. The intention was to provide an opportunity to increase understanding around the benefits of working collaboratively, the need to engage on the development of water plans and to identify current issues the region. A brainstorm session also focussed on what actions can be taken to help resolve these issues. Some of the identified issues included water quality and quantity; soils; biodiversity; funding and communication. Mike Barton from Lake Taupo was the key note speaker and outlined key lessons from a farmers perspective, such as working together when faced with environmental challenges and caps – such as the nitrogen cap. Mike’s presentation can be found in the right hand column of this web page.

A riparian planting field day held at Andy Palmer’s dairy farm in Orari in March provided an opportunity for some great discussion. Andy started planting the riparian margins 15 years ago with native plants sourced from Opuha Nurseries in Geraldine. He also worked with Ines Stager, who is a local landscape architect to come up with riparian planting plans – long before it was commonly talked about.

Key Points:

  • Fence a wide margin
  • Only plant what you can maintain
  • Use minimal variety of species
  • Identify species that fit your site
  • Mark plants for follow up maintenance
  • Weed control is critical particularly in first 5 years
  • Source from local nurseries as you will get better survival.


Looking ahead we have been working together with project partners and stakeholders to plan a range of field days and workshops for landowners and catchment group members.

These include:

  • Getting to Know the Pareora River – an opportunity to find out more about water quality issues in the Pareora River. While Summer flows are often low in the river attendees will get to see how insect life survives in the streambed, waiting for the autumn rain.
  • Winter Grazing Field Day – as part of the Working for Opihi Water Catchment project farmers and community are invited to Craigmore Station, Pareora to discuss and see best practice methods of winter grazing.
  • Overseer Workshops – understanding changes and influences on Overseer, supported by Ballance AgriNutrients and Ravensdown.