Waiau River Once the mighty river of Southland

The Waiau River was once the mighty river of Southland, possessing strength in both volume and power.

Waiau River

Waiau River Tuatapere

Flowing in a north to south direction, the river is 112 kilometres in length stretching from Lake Te Anau, through Lake Manapouri and travelling past Tuatapere before entering Te Waewae Bay.

The demand for hydroelectricity generation meant the main source of the Waiau watershed was directed through a tunnel at the western end of Lake Manapouri.  The water is now released into the sea at Deep Cove on the Fiordland Coast.

This has resulted in the decrease of the river’s water flow so the formerly mighty river is now significantly reduced.  There is still fishing stock in the river and the Waiau River’s trout population attracts fishermen to the region throughout the year.

Southland Rainbow Trout

Southland Rainbow Trout

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