Integrated Catchment Management

Fine sediment: bringing the geomorphology and biology together

 Research Status: Future
Fine sediment in river cobbles

Fine sediment in river cobbles


The interest in fine sediment was primarily driven by the perception that the decline in trout numbers in the river in the mid-1990s was related to sediment impacts, with the finger pointed at forestry operations as the source of this sediment. There were also concerns related to mortality of scallops in areas of Tasman Bay near the Motueka River mouth.

Research Approach

When the sediment research in the ICM programme was formulated, the primary goal was “to develop an understanding (and ultimately model) of sediment impacts on freshwater and marine ecosystems, and how we might manage those impacts”.

This overarching goal also includes research in the following areas:
a) Identify sediment sources, loads and transport in different parts of the catchment;
b) Determine how changes in sediment loads and storage influence river morphology and habitat quality;
c) Investigate the links between sediment loads and ecological impacts in the river and bay;
d) Establish the impact of gravel extraction on riverbed levels;
e) Review the management options that can be used to limit sediment generation, movement and delivery to waterways.

Fine sediment was also a focus of the collaborative learning group on sediment as part of the human dimensions research.

Research Results

What we have done so far is reasonably extensive and includes:

Mud Fine sediment  - Motueka Gorge


Fine sediment - Motueka Gorge

Recent Publications

Year Title File Size
2012 A Summary of Outcomes and selected formal publications from the Integrated Catchment Management (ICM)research programme:2000 – 2011
pdf       1.08MB
2011 Integrated Catchment Management – Special Issue of the NZ Journal of Marine & Freshwater Research  
2010 Contrasting responses to catchment modification among a range of functional and structural indicators of river ecosystem health. doc       37KB
2009 Angler knowledge of environmental processes and its potential integration into the management of New Zealand´s Motueka River catchment pdf       3.34MB
2007 Pine afforestation and stream health: a comparison of land–use in two soft rock catchments, East Cape, New Zealand pdf       375KB
More publications on this topic »
All ICM Publications »

Recent Presentations

Year Title File Size
2007 Sediment dynamics and biological impacts in the Motueka River, New Zealand. pdf       573KB
More presentations on this topic »
All ICM presentations »

BMPs, BEPs and Guidelines

Title Description
Using Gravel Extraction to Restore Backwaters Guidelines for creating backwaters...More »  
Southland’s Wetlands assessment Guide A tool kit for use by landowners that includes practical advice and assistance to encourage the main...More »  
Soil Conservation Technical Handbook The Soil Conservation Technical Handbook is a comprehensive collection of know how about soil conser...More »  
Clean Streams: A Guide to Managing Waterways on Tasman – Marlborough Farms From booklet:
This booklet provides information about how to manage waterways to improve water...More »  
Using Gravel Extraction to Restore Floodway Ponds Guidelines for restoring floodway ponds...More »  
Using Gravel Extraction to Restore Oxbow Lakes Guidelines for restoring oxbow lakes for flood protection...More »  
Using Gravel Extraction to Restore River Channels Guidelines for river channel restoration for flood control measures...More »  
ANZECC Guidelines for Sediment A chapter fron the ANZECC guidelines pertaining to sediment...More »  
Controlling Gully Erosion with Debris Dams A guide for building debris dams to stabilize gully erosion....More »  
Protecting Infilled Valley Bottoms from Gullying A guide to controlling gully erosion....More »  
All BMPs, BEPs & Guidelines »

Primary Contacts:

Image - Les Basher Les Basher  EmailSend email to BasherL
Phone: 03 545 7708
Fax: 03 546 1082
More details»
Landcare Research
Soil science, geomorphology, erosion processes
Image - John Dymond John Dymond  EmailSend email to dymondj
Phone: 06 353 4955
Landcare Research
land and water models, GIS, remote sensing
Image - Reid Forrest Reid Forrest  EmailSend email to reid.forrest
Phone: 035482319
Cawthron Institute
Sediment geochemistry
Image - Paul Gillespie Paul Gillespie  EmailSend email to paul
Phone: 03 548 2319
Fax: 03 546 9464
Cawthron Institute
Estuarine & marine microbial ecology
Image - Roger Young Roger Young  EmailSend email to roger.young
Phone: (03) 548 2319
Fax: (03) 546 9464
Cawthron Institute
Land/water interactions, water quality, fisheries, river health
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Page last updated Monday, 23 February 2009

Related areas

Sediment generation, delivery and impacts