An update on Russel’s dirty rivers tour

Russel is rafting and kayaking down some of our most polluted lowland rivers this summer, as a fun and unusual way to draw attention to the water pollution problems in our own backyard.

Click here for detailed reports and photos from each trip.

Plus check out media coverage of Russel on the Manawatu, the Hutt, the Taumarere, and the Waihou.

This morning Russel’s been at Lake Ellesmere (the first lake on the tour) which has been closed due to toxic algal blooms since late Feb. I sincerely hope he didn’t swallow any!

Got any particularly dirty rivers or lakes in your area? How many times have your favourite swimming spots been closed this summer? Let us know in the comments.

14 Comments Posted

  1. Ki a Tonga, no te Tonga!


    I’ll keep an eye on the Tonga Daily Times for pics of the harvest!

  2. fly..most of the other seeds you sent me have gone to tonga..!

    after a discussion with my neighbor..i decided the food stocks in tonga could be possibly improved by adding yr strains..

    so it is all good..

    that good deed you did..has bounced across the pacific..



  3. While focusing on drinking water quality for Christchurch is all good, particularly as I am a drinker of said water :), nitrate toxicity levels for aquatic ecosystems can be lower than for humans. Rainbow trout, brook trout and Chinook salmon start exhibiting chronic effects at nitrate levels 10 times lower than the human health guideline.

  4. phil …it’s towering down here as well. Great season for corn. We’re going to try kanga pirau this year, thanks to the advice from our mate Wiremu Horomona and his yearnings for a taste from his far-North past and the cooking of his Kuia.

    Time to cast Apiaceae/Umbelliferae seeds into what-was-once-lawn and set those big, hoverfly attracting plants a’growin’. Next spring, you’ll have flying insects (the best kind) to help balance your floral environment. I’ll post some alexander and angelica seeds.

  5. Even better, Phil, one of those ‘Tui girls’, up to her thighs in a filthy black river – strike at the heart (or thereabouts) of yer ‘average Kiwi bloke’.

  6. ah well..i guess delayed gratification is better than none at all..

    this ‘dirty-rivers’ thing is something i used to bang on about..

    i wanted rod and jeanette to don thigh-waders..

    ..and to go and stand in tht filthy black river..have a pic taken..

    ..and put in on a poster..

    to me..there was no tidier summary/illustration of both the problems/tasks..and the enormity/urgency of those tasks..

    that the/any environmental movement faces..

    (they didn’t seem to think it was such a good


  7. Russel – your plans for a ‘Waikato swim in April’ sound chilling!

    I’m sewing up a latex full-body anti-bacterial suit for the occasion, modelled closely on that worn by Marina (Aqua Marina) from ‘Stingray’ (yes, scales )and will feature a utility belt (eel repellent, 1000000 candle-power submersible spot-lamp etc.) and mask designed to make the wearer attractive to both sexes and representatives of the media.
    If you’ll just send me your inside-leg measurement, I’ll get the ol’ Singer singing!

  8. Fun how they get around when Parliament isn’t sitting, isn’t it?

    I wonder what the NAt MP’s are doing this week? Hawaii?

  9. Hey Russel, you should check out some of the rivers in New Plymouth and the greater Taranaki region. Some of them will make you sick while others have been looked after well with extensive riparian planting and fencing off.

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