Akaroa Marine Reserve

The Akaroa Marine Reserve, an area of 512.15 hectares (1,265.6 acres)[1] at the entrance to the Akaroa Harbour in New Zealand, was approved in 2013 after a lengthy campaign, and established in 2014.[2]

Akaroa Marine Reserve
The entrance of Akaroa Harbour. The reserve is in an area on the left hand side of the entrance.
Akaroa Marine Reserve
LocationNew Zealand
Nearest cityChristchurch
Coordinates43.882367°S 172.965131°E / -43.882367; 172.965131
Area512 ha


Forest and Bird carried out exploratory dives in the Akaroa Harbour in 1990 and a formal proposal for the establishment of a 560-hectare (1,400-acre) marine reserve was made in 1996 by the Akaroa Harbour Marine Protection Society.[3] The Conservation Minister Kate Wilkinson declined the application for the reserve in 2010 on the grounds that it would adversely affect recreation fishing. The decision was challenged in the High Court and was quashed in a 2012 ruling.[4] In terms of actual numbers the two separate consultation processes for the application had attracted more support than opposition.

In April 2013 the Minister of Conservation Nick Smith announced the approval of the reserve but at the reduced size of 475 ha. The size was reduced to take into account the concerns about customary and recreational fishing.[5] Subsequently, the size was finalised as 512 ha.[6]


The harbour as a whole has considerable natural values and fauna of the inner and outer harbour differs. There are pressures on the ecology from human activity such as settlements on the edge of the harbour and there is land and water-based industrial activity.[7]

See also


  1. "Akaroa Marine Reserve: Places to goin Banks Peninsula". Department of Conservation (New Zealand). Retrieved 2019-08-19.
  2. Rachel Young (8 June 2014). "NZ's newest marine reserve opens at Akaroa". The Press. Retrieved 2019-08-29.
  3. "Akaroa Marine Reserve Banks Peninsula" (PDF). Akaroa Harbour Marine Protection Society. January 1996. Archived from the original (PDF) on 5 February 2013. Retrieved 14 April 2013.
  4. "Akaroa Harbour declared a marine reserve". ONE News - Television New Zealand. 14 April 2013. Retrieved 14 April 2013.
  5. "beehive.govt.nz - Akaroa marine reserve approved". The Beehive (New Zealand Government). 14 April 2013. Retrieved 15 April 2013.
  6. "Data Table - Protected Areas - LINZ Data Service (recorded area 512.15 ha)". Land Information New Zealand. Retrieved 2019-08-29.
  7. Fenwick, Graham (May 2004). Marine ecology of Akaroa Harbour: rocky shores and subtidal soft bottoms (PDF). Christchurch, N.Z.: NIWA. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2013-02-18. Retrieved 2013-04-14.