Auckland Council will spend more than $1 million to support the Hoteo Sediment Reduction Project, after receiving a grant from the Ministry for the Environment’s Freshwater Improvement Fund.
The 28km Hoteo River is the second largest contributor of sediment to the Kaipara Harbour. Some key sources of sediment are overland run off from cultivated fields, pugged pasture discharge from farm tracks, forest tracks and unsealed roads.
The grant will allow Council’s Healthy Waters team to implement previous findings on the Hoteo River by putting in place natural engineering solutions to reduce in-stream erosion. It will also support planting and fencing along stream banks. The money will be available over a five-year period.
The Hoteo catchment has been prioritised for management with a focus on community initiatives to restore ecosystems in and around streams and rivers, to limit erosion and sedimentation, and to improve water quality. It has been prioritised primarily because of the threat posed by river sediment to a key snapper breeding ground.
At 405sqm, the Hoteo is Auckland’s largest catchment. It is geographically diverse with predominantly pastoral agriculture and exotic forestry. Wellsford is the only town within the catchment.
Streams, rivers, wetlands and forests provide critical habitat for indigenous plants and animals, some of which are regionally or nationally threatened.