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  Services » Publications » Technical reports - by year » tr201429

Appropriate use of mussel spat ropes to facilitate passage for stream organisms

On this page: about this report, read or download the report

Report: TR 2014/29

Author: B David, M Hamer, J Tonkin & C Bourke

About this report

Over one-third of New Zealand’s native fish species need to migrate to and from the ocean to complete their lifecycle. Consequently, these species rely on unimpaired river connectivity in both directions for maintaining healthy, functioning populations and abundant stocks of whitebait and eels.

This report describes the development and testing of an option that can easily and relatively cheaply be retrofitted to some culverts and possibly other structures to improve fish passage. The report briefly describes some of the issues around culverts specifically, and how use of mussel spat ropes may overcome some of the problems for particular species in particular situations. The type of rope to use and how it may be installed is also described.

Read or download the report

Appropriate use of mussel spat ropes to facilitate passage for stream organisms


  Executive summary 
1 Introduction
2 The issue
3 Culvert perching
4 Culvert hydrology
5 What are mussel spat ropes and what do they look like?
6 New Zealand fish species and life-stages: 'swimmers' and 'climbers'
7 When to use ropes
7.1 Improving passage past perched culverts
7.2 Improving passage through culvert barrels
7.3 Is a retrofit required?
7.4 Evaluating retrofit effectivementss through monitoring
7.5 How to install ropes
7.6 Issues with using ropes
8 Rules / laws around barriers to fish passage
9 Summary
  Further information
  Appendix 1 - Example of intermittent fish passage
  Appendix 2 - Installation photos
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