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Water samples collected for Amelia’s water art installation

July 11, 2010

The Waihopai river near North Road

Harrison looking up the Otepuni

On Sunday, my 3-year-old son Harrison and I collected some water sample’s for Amelia’s art project about the health of New Zealand waterways. I came across her project though a comment posted on my blog – it demonstrates for me how blogs connect people with common interests. I decided to add some samples from where I live as she needs way more water samples from the South Island. I’m enjoying following the process of her art and look forward to seeing the final installation.

We stopped first at the Waihopai river, just off the North Road bridge. The water looked brown and there was a fair bit of surface scum floating on the water. Harrison wouldn’t go to the water’s edge because he said it had ‘dog pook’ in it. I’m not sure about that but it certainly didn’t invite me to swim in it, nor did I want to dip my hand in it.

Our next stop was the Otepuni (stream, I think). We stopped on Ninth St, just behind Invercargill’s main Tay Street. The stream here runs through a park although the banks of it have very little vegetation. I’m told it is one of the most polluted waterways in Southland because of high concentrations of heavy metals -it runs through an industrial area of town. The water we collected had a slight yellowish tinge but actually it didn’t look so bad to the eye. The stream is shallow, hemmed in by concrete with weeds covering the bottom. Ducks floated by. Harrison made us walk along the banks to an old wrought iron bridge and walk back along the grass on the other side.

Collecting water at the Oreti

Then we drove to the Oreti River to a site we often stop at for lunch – about 400m upstream of the jet ski club. The river is wide and slow here -far removed from it’s clear and narrow running in the Upper Oreti that I saw last week. The tide was in so there wasn’t much beach and probably most of what we collected is salt water. Harrison wanted to go for a walk down towards a jet boat and we passed a dead sheep floating at the water’s edge. I had to drag him away from it – “I wanna see the dead sheeeeeppp!”.

One Comment leave one →
  1. July 22, 2010 1:01 am

    Thanks Juliet, this is great! Love the photos.

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