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Braided River Revival / Whakahaumanu Ngā Awa ā Pākihi

Last updated: 31 August 2023
Reporting frequency: Quarterly
Portfolio: Biodiversity and biosecurity

We are creating landscape-scale alignment to revive our braided rivers from the mountains to the sea/ki uta ki tai and restore the connections between people and rivers.

We will work to coordinate a regional alliance to create landscape-scale alignment and encourage communities to participate in reviving these critical ecological corridors.

We will lead and support both protection and enhancement and seek opportunities to support new initiatives.

Find out more about Canterbury’s braided rivers.

This work includes:

How are we tracking on our Levels of Service?

Level of Service 16: Partner with Ngāi Tahu, agencies, landowners and the community to maintain the natural character and restore the mauri of braided rivers, ki uta ki tai.

As part of this level of service we will:

  • 16.1 Ensure partners are aligning work in braided rivers through the development and implementation of ki uta ki tai river revival strategies for braided rivers.
  • 16.2 Actively manage Environment Canterbury-owned land to protect the natural character of rivers.
  • 16.3 Manage and maintain regional parks to promote and protect a range of braided river values.

How did we do: We continue to promote and support the landscape alliance approach to braided rivers through collaborating with ngā Papatipu Rūnanga, community groups, the Department of Conversation and Land Information New Zealand on extensive weed control work in rivers, including alignment with flood resilience and berm transition work.  Recent examples include the Waipara River clearance at Stoddards Island, Rakitata and the Ashley River/Rakahuri.

The comprehensive multi-agency programme of work in the Rakitata includes Ko te Whakahaumanu o te Rakitata Awa / the Rakitata Revival strategy, which has been drafted for public consultation in July-October 2023.

The operational delivery of the predator control and outcome monitoring project around breeding colonies of black-billed gulls in the lower Waimakariri Regional Park has been completed. Predator control at Kowhai Bush River Protection Reserve in Kaikōura to protect indigenous forest birds (especially black robins) is ongoing and progressing well. Environmental weed control work at Kaikōura River Protection Reserves, West Melton Reserves, Ahuriri Lagoon, Kaitorete Spit and Stour River reserve is ongoing and progressing well.

We sponsor or support events to connect the community with braided river mahinga kai, biodiversity and recreational values in a regional park and in 2022/23 we ran, or were an active collaborator in, 26 events. In addition, we supported a further 29 events across our regional parks through either reduced or no permit fees and levies. These events included planting days, recreational events, and celebrations to mark the opening of new tracks and facilities. Overall, there were 89 planned events/activities in the park network. The Willows project in the Waimakariri River Regional Park is complete and the facility offers a safe and accessible recreational facility to the Christchurch public.


How are we doing on our key initiatives?

Create project plan for the Takapō Regional Park and commence initial stages

How are we doing: Community engagement has been delivered and a business case is completed. Progress has been made with the procurement of native plants and harvest and chipping prices for wilding conifers have been obtained. Stage 1 harvesting has commenced.

On track

Recent highlights and updates


Our 2021 native bird of the year, the pekapeka-tou-roa (native long-tailed bat) has a boosted roost habitat thanks to iwi and government working in partnership.

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