Restoration of Native Fish in New Zealand Lakes and Reservoirs

  • David K. RoweEmail author
  • Gerry Closs
  • David W. West


Since 1900, a range of anthropogenic stressors has steadily depleted the indigenous fish fauna in New Zealand lakes. Efforts to restore these fish populations have involved translocations of small indigenous fish species to replace those reduced by introduced piscivorous fish and elver trap-and-transfer operations over high dams to restore elver recruitment to commercial and customary eel fisheries above the dams. Habitat restoration for small benthic fish (through removal of invasive macrophytes) and for pelagic species (through water quality improvement) has also occurred in lakes, but this was incidental to other management goals and not specifically targeted at native fish restoration. Control of introduced pest fish in lakes is now increasing in importance but is limited in both scope and methods and so is still in its infancy. Overall, there is currently much less focus on indigenous fish restoration in New Zealand lakes and reservoirs than in rivers and streams. Information on the success of methods used in lakes is sparse because effective monitoring is often lacking or too limited to provide reliable data on success rate.


Restoration methods Translocation Connectivity Invasive species 


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.National Institute of Water and Atmospheric Research LtdHamiltonNew Zealand
  2. 2.Department of ZoologyUniversity of OtagoDunedinNew Zealand
  3. 3.Department of ConservationChristchurchNew Zealand

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