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Latest E. Coli reading, 07 February 2023: 389 (orange).

Waiorongomai Stream mouth cleared

Waiorongomai Stream flows freely.
Photo by Miraz Jordan.

A couple of years ago a local resident contacted Wellington Regional Council about the driftwood log jam and the 'bamboo' that together clogged the Waiorongomai Stream mouth. That jam affected free flow of the stream and impeded passage of eels.

Waiorongomai Stream with driftwood log jam and bamboo behind.
Waiorongomai Stream with driftwood log jam and bamboo behind.

The consent process included the following information:
> * Blockage at the stream mouth is caused by an accumulation of driftwood and bamboo;
> * Fish passage is impeded and is likely contributing to the poor ecological health of the lake/wetland upstream;
> * … are proposing to remove the driftwood and the bamboo to clear the blockage, this may need to be undertaken on a periodic basis as driftwood will keep accumulating.

Such things always progress slowly, needing consultation and resource consents, but finally, in September 2022 the stream mouth was cleared. Driftwood was removed and stacked up on the banks and the weed was cleared out.

A storm not long after the mouth was cleared has brought some of the driftwood back into the stream, but as the weed was the bigger problem and as the Consent mentioned clearing things periodically, this shouldn't be a problem.

It turns out the 'bamboo' is actually [Phragmites karka](https://www.nzpcn.org.nz/flora/species/phragmites-karka/), a perennial rhizomatous grass originally from Africa, India, New Guinea and northern Australia, which seems to die off in winter and regrow in spring.

Update from Kezna Cameron, [21 September 2022](https://www.facebook.com/groups/1676219645957416/posts/3326702267575804/):

> I would like to say a huge thank you to Carl from Alan G Gibson Ltd for clearing the Waiorongomai Stream (south Waikawa beach) in consultation with the Greater Wellington Council and Ngā Hapū o Ōtaki. The stream has been blocked by weed and sediment for years. This has caused many issues for the eels and causing flooding in recent weather. It was going to be up to local neighbours to pay for this but Carl has advised us there will be no charge. Because of the support the community give his business he would like to give back to the locals. Great community spirit right there! So if you need any earthworks you know who to call!

This item was updated on 21 September 2022 06:43:16