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Lakes of New Zealand

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Lake Taupō, the largest lake
Lake Marian in Fiordland National Park

There are 3,820 lakes in New Zealand that have a surface area larger than one hectare. Many of the lakes in the central North Island are volcanic crater lakes. The majority of the lakes near the Southern Alps were carved by glaciers. Artificial lakes created as hydroelectric reservoirs are common in South Canterbury, Central Otago and along the Waikato River.[1]


There are:

  • 41 lakes with a surface area larger than 10 km2 (1000 ha)
  • 229 lakes greater than 0.5 km2 (50 ha)
  • 3820 lakes greater than 0.01 km2 (1 ha)


A trophic level index is used as a measure of the pollution levels of lakes in New Zealand.

Based on the monitoring of 134 lakes it is estimated that one third of New Zealand lakes have high nutrient levels or have poor water quality.[2]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Nathan, Simon. Types of lake. Te Ara – the Encyclopedia of New Zealand. Updated 24 September 2007. Accessed 23 March 2019.
  2. ^ New Zealand Ministry for the Environment Archived 22 May 2010 at the Wayback Machine – Trophic Level Index for lakes

Further reading[edit]

  • McGeorge, Pamela (2007). A land of water : rivers & lakes of New Zealand. Auckland, NZ: David Batement. ISBN 978-1-86953-616-9.
  • Verburg, P.; Hamill, K.; Unwin, M.; Abell, J. (August 2010). Lake water quality in New Zealand 2010: Status and trends (PDF). Hamilton: National Institute of Water & Atmospheric Research Ltd. Archived from the original (PDF) on 26 December 2010.
  • Hamill, Keith (November 2006). Snapshot of Lake Water Quality in New Zealand (PDF). ME 776. Ministry for the Environment. ISBN 0-478-30107-3. Archived from the original (PDF) on 23 May 2010.

External links[edit]