Wetlands of New Zealand
New Zealand is an archipelago located in the South Pacific Ocean comprising two large islands and numerous smaller islands spread over 23° of latitude. It has a relatively wet climate with mean annual rainfall of around 600–4,000 mm per year depending on geographic region. The landscape is geologically active and varied, dominated in different regions by mountains, glacial valleys, volcanic plateaus, broad floodplains, and lowlands, with an extensive coastline. Here we provide an overview of New Zealand wetlands, describing the key wetland types, flora and fauna, progress with implementing the Ramsar Convention relevant wetland policy, approaches to restoration, and cultural connections. The focus is on freshwater and estuarine systems, particularly palustrine wetlands such as bogs, fens, swamps, and marshes.
KeywordsNew Zealand wetlands pressures management threatened species
- Clarkson B, Watts C, Sorrell B, Bartlam S, Thornburrow D, Fitzgerald N, Chague-Goff C, Bodmin K, Champion P. Biotic composition of New Zealand lowland wetlands: I vegetation and II invertebrates. Landcare Research Contract Report [LC0708/142]. Hamilton: Landcare Research; 2008.Google Scholar
- Clarkson BR, Champion PD, Rance BD, Johnson PN, Bodmin KA, Forester L, Gerbeaux P, Reeves PN. Wetland indicator status ratings for New Zealand species. Unpublished report. Hamilton: Landcare Research; 2013. Available from: www.landcareresearch.co.nz/__data/assets/pdf_file/0014/64400/Wetland_indicator_status_July13.pdf. Accessed 30 Dec 2105.
- Clarkson BR, Overton JM, Ausseil AGE, Robertson HA. Towards quantitative limits to maintain the ecological integrity of freshwater wetlands: interim report. Landcare Research Contract Report [LC1933]. Hamilton: Landcare Research; 2015.Google Scholar
- Denyer K, Robertson H. National guidelines for the assessment of potential Ramsar wetlands in New Zealand. 2016. Department of Conservation, Wellington.Google Scholar
- Department of Conservation. National report on the implementation of the Ramsar Convention on Wetlands. Wellington: Department of Conservation; 2011.Google Scholar
- Department of Conservation, Ministry for the Environment. New Zealand biodiversity strategy. Wellington: Department of Conservation/Ministry for the Environment; 2000.Google Scholar
- Goodman JM, Dunn NR, Ravenscroft PJ, Allibone RM, Boubee JAT, David BO, Griffiths M, Ling N, Hitchmough RA, Rolfe JR. Conservation status of New Zealand freshwater fish, 2013. Wellington: Department of Conservation; 2014. 12 p.Google Scholar
- Graeme A. Taylor. 2013. Conservation status of New Zealand birds, 2012. New Zealand Threat Classification Series 4. Department of Conservation, Wellington. p.9.Google Scholar
- Hugh A. Robertson, John E. Dowding, Graeme P. Elliott, Rodney A. Hitchmough, Colin M. Miskelly, Colin F.J. O’Donnell, Ralph G. Powlesland, Paul M. Sagar, R. Paul Scofield.Google Scholar
- Johnson P, Gerbeaux P. Wetland types in New Zealand. Wellington: Department of Conservation; 2004.Google Scholar
- McGlone MC. Postglacial history of New Zealand wetlands and implications for their conservation. N Z J Ecol. 2009;33:1–23.Google Scholar
- Miskelly CM, Dowding JE, Elliott GP, Hitchmough RA, Powlesland RG, Robertson HA, Sagar PM, Scofield RP, Taylor GA. Conservation status of New Zealand birds. Notornis. 2008;55(3):117–35.Google Scholar
- O’Brien L, Dunn NR. Mudfish (Neochanna galaxiidae) literature review, Science for conservation 277. Wellington: Department of Conservation; 2007. p. 88.Google Scholar
- Peters MA, D Hamilton, C Eames. Action on the ground: A review of community environmental groups’ restoration objectives, activities and partnerships in New Zealand. 2015. New Zealand Journal of Ecology (2015) 39(2):179–189.Google Scholar
- Robertson HA. Ramsar wetlands in NZ: why are they important and where are we going? Waiology; 2013. Available from: http://sciblogs.co.nz/waiology/2013/02/05/ramsar-wetlands-in-nz-why-are-they-important-and-where-are-we-going/. Accessed 30 Dec 2015.
- Suren A, Sorrell B. Aquatic invertebrate communities of lowland wetlands in New Zealand. Characterising spatial, temporal and geographic distribution patterns, Science for conservation 305. Wellington: Department of Conservation; 2010.Google Scholar
- Taylor R, Smith I (Principal authors). The state of New Zealand’s environment. Wellington: NZ Government Printer; 1997.Google Scholar