Report: TR 2017/37
Author: Michael Townsend (National Institute of Water & Atmospheric Research Ltd)
Estuaries provide a range of valuable ‘ecosystem services’ for humans such as food provision, water filtration, nutrient regulation and storm protection.
The Waikato Regional Policy Statement (2016) identifies the importance of recognising and maintaining or enhancing ecosystem services. This study describes the development of ecosystem service maps for Waikato estuaries, and builds upon previous work that mapped intertidal habitats (i.e. the type of plant and animal communities).
The habitat types are linked to different ecosystem services using a matrix approach. For example, seagrass beds provide primary production, habitat structure and retain and stabilise sediment, while cockle beds provide food, sequester carbon, and process and store nutrients.
The ecosystem service maps can be used to understand which parts of our estuaries are important for different ecosystem services and for communicating the value of these important ecosystems to our stakeholders.
|2||Adaptation of the ecosystem services matrix to WRC habitats|
|2.1||Adjusting matrix scores|
|3||Ecosystem service maps for Coromandel estuaries|
|4||Ecosystem service maps: recommendations for their use and future improvements|
|Glossary of abbreviations and terms|
|Appendix A: Ecosystem Service Matrix Tables|
|Appendix B: Supporting literature|