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Extract from the Ashburton Zone Implementation Programme ‘A large variety of native plants, birds and other species live in the rivers, lakes, wetlands, hapua and streams of our zone. Our zone’s braided rivers and lakes together provide the largest habitat (over 70,000 ha) for aquatic birdlife in NZ. Some 40,000 birds can be present at any one time.
The Hakatere/Ashburton River catchment supports about 14 native fish including threatened Canterbury mudfish, and threatened invertebrate species, such as the koura. About 48 native bird species live here. Four are nationally threatened and two are at-risk bird species. These include wrybill, banded dotterel, pied stilt, and black-billed gull.
For Ngāi Tahu, water is a taonga (treasure) left by the ancestors to provide and sustain life. All the waterways and their associated tributaries, wetlands and springs in the zone are considered significant resources, of cultural, spiritual and historical importance to Ngāi Tāhu.’
Important Bird Areas on the Ashburton – links to 6-page PDF file that includesmaps, habitat types, and threats relevant to this river. This document was extracted from Forest & Bird’s 177-page 20Mb file on all rivers, lakes, and coastal areas.
The river flow regime in the Ashburton River – Hakatere is diverse and typical of glacial fed rivers in the Canterbury region. Its main source of flow is from precipitation and snowmelt in the headwaters with the lowest flows occurring during the late summer, and the highest during springtime.