Thursday Update #21

Blue Duck (Whio) Report

I received two reports on the Blue Duck family in the vicinity of the Birches (Major Jones) swing bridge. The first report was of a parent with 6 ducklings during last weekend.

The second report was yesterday which reported the mother and two ducklings were sighted and photographed.

It is fantastic that information is being fed back to us. The Department of Conservation certainly appreciates the reports. I can only hope that there are still 6 ducklings and that at the time of the last sighting 4 ducklings were hidden from view. It is easy to take a species for granted when we see a bird but we need to remember just how small the numbers of this species are. It is great that the predators (rats and stoats) of Blue Duck are being targeted to give the Blue Duck a chance to build up their numbers.

I look forward to further reports of sightings and hopefully a photograph.


Genesis staff reported the release of sediment from the Rangipo Dam last week and I reported the fact in Update #20. My observation is that the lower river is again covered in sediment. The tail of the Plank pool has a thick layer of materia,l which is natural, where the slower flowing Plank water meets a much stronger current in the centre stream. There is a lot of sediment in the lower Log Pool, though it is clearing. and will probably have passed through within a week. The Reed pool has a lot of sediment in it. The sediment is quite deep for 66% of the pool. At the head of the pool sediment is up to 60cms deep. The remaining third of the pool seems to be clear and there are many spawning fish to be seen. I hesitate to say that the sediment that I have seen in this part of the river is the result of the Rangipo Dam gates being opened. The work removing willows has exposed a lot of sediment that has been previously trapped by the willows.  But I see any effect from the willow removal as minimal. It therefore seems to me that the Rangipo Dam flushing is not passing through to the lake as expected. We are to discuss this matter with Genesis in early December at the Rangipo Dam site.

Fishing Report

There are few anglers on the riverdespite some good fish still being caught. The run of fish seems to be continuing.

We have had another 12mm of rain today with a slight rise in river level. Ideally this should mean good fishing.

Eric Wilson

Secretary / Treasurer