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Porirua Stream

A major artery of Porirua Harbour


Juliet Milne, 28 October 2009

Outline
Catchment overview Monitoring & investigations
water quality stormwater ecology

Key threats Management issues

Catchment overview
Catchment area: 55 km2 5 major tributaries
Belmont, Takapu, Stebbings, Mitchell & Kenepuru

Key flow statistics


mean annual flow: median flow: mean annual flood: 783 L/s 373 L/s 35 m3/s

mean annual low flow125 L/s

Monitoring
Rainfall & stream flow Water quality
oxygen, temperature, pH clarity, turbidity & TSS nutrients & E. coli heavy metals

Ecological indicators
Algae, invertebrates & fish

100,000
Glenside

E. coli (cfu/100 mL)

10,000 1,000 100 10 Sep-03 Sep-04 Sep-05 Sep-06 Sep-07 Sep-08 Sep-09

Action Alert

E. coli bacteria counts Glenside

100,000 E. coli (cfu/100 mL) 10,000 1,000 100 10 Sep-03 Sep-04 Sep-05 Sep-06 Sep-07 Sep-08 Sep-09

Glenside Wall Park

Action Alert

E. coli bacteria counts Glenside & Wall Park

Nitrate nitrogen by key landcover classes

Upper quartile

median

Porirua Stream
Lower quartile

ANZECC Lowland TV

ANZECC Upland TV

Upland native forest

Lowland native forest

Lowland pasture

Lowland Urban

Clarity (m)

Sept 2003

Jan 2007

Porirua Stream clarity over time

TSS=1.5 g/m3, flow=0.14 m3/s

TSS=98 g/m3, flow=0.329 m3/s

Sediment load: 0.0126 kg per minute

Sediment load: 1.93 kg per minute

Porirua Stream suspended sediment

Stormwater investigations
1) Wet weather stream flows sediment & heavy metals

100 Concentration (u g/L)

Total Copper Diss. Copper

10

Acute toxicity Chronic toxicity

0.1 Jan-06

Jul-06

Jan-07

Jul-07

Copper concentrations in Porirua Stream during wet weather flows

10 Concentration (u g/L) 9 8 7 6 5 4 3 2 1 0 Jan-06 Jul-06 Jan-07


Chronic toxicity Acute toxicity

Jul-07

Copper concentrations in Porirua Stream during wet weather flows

Suspended sediment and heavy metal loads


Date of event 27 March 2006 7 April 2006 8 April 2006 25 April 2006 10 May 2006 11 May 2006 Estimated runoff volume (m3) 11,130 9,560 106,640 4,570 15,370 Total instream contaminant load (kg) TSS Diss Cu Total Cu Diss Pb Total Pb 189 76 12,690 87 707 0.10 0.05 1.32 0.74 0.02 0.13 0.09 0.06 9.59 1.94 0.03 0.29 0.01 <0.01 0.09 0.02 <0.01 <0.01 0.06 0.02 12.92 1.18 0.01 0.10 Diss Zn Total Zn 0.51 0.32 3.78 1.71 0.12 0.51 0.52 0.52 75.33 12.37 0.24 1.24

236,150 193,407

Porirua Stream at Kenepuru, March to May 2006 6 runoff events

2) Streambed sediment quality


Zinc & DDT key contaminants PAHs Kenepuru Stream above SH 1 Little fine sediment present Fine sediment and its associated contaminant load is rapidly flushed through the system into Porirua Harbour

What about the stream life?

Invertebrates indicators of stream health

Stream monitoring sites & key land cover classes ranked from highest to lowest aquatic health

Decreasing macroinvertebrate index scores

Invertebrate health vs land-use


160 140 Excellent

MCI (mean score)

120 Good 100 Fair 80 Poor 60

40 Indigenous Forest Pasture Urban

Bugs dont like concrete!


Invertebrate health score

7 6 5 4 3 2 1 0 0 10 20
Impervious cover (%)
Moderate Moderate Poor Poor Excellent Excellent

30

40

Koaro

Banded kokopu

Eel

Takapu Stream tributary


Inanga

Giant kokopu

Stream state summary


Monitoring shows:
elevated nutrients & faecal bacteria stormwater-derived toxicants present passable invertebrate health relatively high native fish values

Room for improvement

Key threats
Discharges sewage leaks & overflows, industrial wastes, silt from earthworks/ erosion, stormwater

Key threats.
Filling in/piping of small streams & gullies Increased runoff Bank protection works & drain clearance

Key threats
Loss of habitat Loss of function
(slow, cool, clean water)

Loss of future use

Management issues
Sediment, nutrient & contaminant inputs
control at source slow runoff down!

Management issues
Stream habitat
minimise stream loss (pipes, culverts) restore riparian margins protect & enhance instream habitat provide for fish passage

What you do can make a difference