Biodiversity

Wetlands

Wetlands with flax bushes and stream heading out to sea
Whakanewha wetland, Waiheke Island

Wetlands are among the most threatened ecosystems in New Zealand, with over 97 per cent of Auckland wetlands having been destroyed through drainage and land development.

Wetlands are areas on the margins of the land that are wet. In the Auckland region, they typically form on the edges of streams and lakes, and in estuaries or damp places where water collects.

They support plants and animals specially adapted to living in wet conditions.

The special nature of wetlands lies in the contrasting textures and colours of the plants, the subtle changes in species across gradients (wet to dry; salty to freshwater), the fluctuating water levels and the secretive native bird and fish species which live in the wetland ecosystem.

Many of New Zealand's wetland plants and animals are found nowhere else in the world.

To learn more, including places you can discover Auckland's wetlands, see our guide to Auckland's wetlands (PDF 1.9MB).

For information on helping to protect and restore wetlands, see our two wonderful wetlands brochures:

Wonderful wetlands part 1 (PDF 364KB)
Wonderful wetlands part 2 (PDF 864KB)

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