Park's lakes in for a cleanout

MATT RILKOFF
Last updated 05:00 17/11/2012
tdn water stand
Cameron Burnell
NPDC Parks manager Mark Bruhn talks to coucillor Heather Dodunski about plans to remove tonnes of sediment from the lakes at Pukekura Park

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Birds, fish and people are set to benefit from a plan to remove tonnes of sediment from Pukekura Park's lakes next year.

As deep as 1.5 metres in some places, the sediment is made up of some of the 90 tonnes of suspended matter estimated to flow through the lake system each year.

"Our aim is to have a lakes system that is cleaner, looks and smells nicer than it does now and is better for the birds and fish that live there," park curator Mr Connolly said.

"We'll focus on the sediment removal on the main and fountain lakes - starting in the upper reaches of the main lake where the sediment accumulation is the greatest."

Known to have a healthy eel and goldfish population, the lakes also support an unexpected amount of native fish thought to have entered the lake system from feeder streams as a water wheel blocks its outflow.

The council is already developing wetlands along two of the feeder streams which will help reduce sediment getting into the lakes system.

The lakes' water quality has progressively worsened since the 1950s, along with the growth of urban development in the catchment areas of the park's feeder streams.

The enclosed and and poorly flushed nature of the park's lakes make them particularly vulnerable to water pollution.

No sediment will be removed from the lakes until the wetlands are finished. It has not yet been decided how the sediment will be removed.

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- Taranaki Daily News

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