Researchers have recovered a scientific buoy from the Kāpiti Marine Reserve that went missing in late March.
On Friday afternoon, the buoy was successfully hauled to the surface in a joint effort by NIWA, DOC and the Greater
Wellington Regional Council (GWRC).
NIWA physical oceanographer Dr Joe O’Callaghan describes the recovery as a "huge relief" following several attempts to
retrieve the buoy.
After an initial inspection, Dr O’Callaghan believes the buoy was not hit by a vessel.
"We will do some further forensics over the next few weeks but it appears that the depth and swift currents at the
Kāpiti location made for challenging conditions for the mooring.
The buoy named ‘WRIBO-K’ (Wellington Region Integrated Buoy Observations - Kāpiti) was installed in Kāpiti Marine
Reserve in November to provide a range of real time scientific measurements including currents, waves, salinity, water
temperature, sediment, wind direction and speed. This buoy was a ‘sister’ to WRIBO, deployed in Wellington Harbour in
GWRC Coastal Scientist Dr Megan Oliver says data collected by the buoy provided valuable insights into the way
activities on land affects ocean water quality.
"We are naturally disappointed that the buoy and mooring are no longer in place, but this is always the risk when you
put equipment in the ocean.
"We will take a closer look at the instruments in the next few weeks and see what can be salvaged or repaired, and