Shag River Estuary Swamp

Description: An area of saline swamp above coastal marine area at mouth of Shag River. 1

Type/Class: Swamp. 2

Size: 14.5 ha.

Altitude: 0 - 20 m above sea level.

Approximate location: South of the intersection of Walsh Road and Hampden-Palmerston Road, Palmerston.
NZTM (centre point): E1427660 N4962540.

Regional Plan: Water for Otago. Schedule 9 Regionally Significant Wetland, no. 135, Map F59.

Territorial Authority: Waitaki District Council.


Interactive map of Shag River Estuary Swamp

Recorded Values:




High degree of wetland naturalness. 2


Scarce in Otago in terms of its ecological or physical character. Scarce wetland type. Saltmarsh community with glasswort (Sarcocornia quinqueflora), jointed rush (Juncus articulatus) and Atriplex spp. 1
Less than 15% of swamps remain in Otago. 2


Highly valued by Kai Tahu for cultural and spiritual beliefs, values and uses, including mahika kai and waahi taoka. 1

A1 - A3, A7 - A9

No relevant information is currently held by the ORC.


Other Information:

  • Supports recreational fisheries for whitebait/inanga (Galaxias spp.) and brown trout (Salmo trutta), as well as habitat for flounder (Rhombosolea sp.), mullet and stargazer. 53

  • Area is also important for wildlife habitat and contains archaeological sites. 53

  • Identified as an Area of Significant Indigenous Vegetation and Habitat for Indigenous Fauna in the Waitaki District Plan. 12



1 Otago Regional Council (2004) Regional Plan: Water for Otago. Published by the Otago Regional Council, Dunedin.

2 Ausseil, A.G., Newsome, P., Johnson, P. (2008) Wetland Mapping in the Otago Region. Landcare Research Contract Report prepared for the Otago Regional Council.

12 Waitaki District Council (2004) Waitaki District Plan. Published by the Waitaki District Council, Oamaru.

53 Davis, S.F. (1987) Wetlands of national importance to fisheries. New Zealand freshwater fisheries report no. 90. Ministry of Agriculture and Fisheries, Christchurch.


Aerial View of Shag River Estuary Swamp (March 2005)


Page last updated 9 July 2024.