Pointing at map

Catchment Action Prioritisation Tool (CAPTure)

Research & Monitoring – With Descriptor

What is CAPTure?

CAPTure is a tool that aids decision making around freshwater management at a catchment scale. CAPTure helps to build a geographic picture by combining existing data from maps, models and surveys, making it easy to understand and visualise a catchment and where problem areas are located.

What was the purpose of the Living Water trial of CAPTure?

Living Water decided to trial CAPTure in the Pūkorokoro-Miranda catchment in the Western Firth of Thames. In this catchment, work is underway to restore and reconnect rural freshwater ecosystems and a sensitive coastal environment using a community-led ‘mountains to sea’ approach. The trial successfully contributed to the ‘mountains to sea’ project by highlighting priority actions that landowners could implement and provide guidance about where these actions should be situated to reduce impacts on water quality in the lower catchment.

Full CAPTure report available here

Who would use CAPTure?

Community groups, catchment managers and landowners in smaller catchments could use CAPTure. Living Water found using this tool increased engagement from landowners, encouraging them to work together for greater ecological benefits.

How does CAPTure work?

A GIS expert loads the available datasets of any scale and CAPTure combines them to provide easy-to-understand guidance on where problem areas are located and potential mitigations. CAPTure:

  • Identifies values, including: water quality, habitats, taonga, flow regimes, land, and biodiversity
  • Identifies threats to values, including: sedimentation, nutrient loss, hillslope erosion, streambank erosion, riparian stock access, fish passage barriers and other threats
  • Combines these threats and calculates a single score can be used to identify reach-watersheds with the greatest overall threat. An additional refinement is to weight the threat scores to place more emphasis on the threats with the greater impact on the catchment value.
Dion Patterson

Dion Patterson

DOC Site Lead, Waikato Peat Lakes and Pūkorokoro-Miranda
Rose Graham

Rose Graham

DOC Ranger – Waikato Peat Lakes and Pūkorokoro-Miranda
Table 2

Existing data sets can be very complex. In this catchment the following data sets were combined along with Farm Environment Plans (FEPs):

Capture threats table

This table gives an idea of the type of easy-to-use information CAPTure can provide for users

common threats and mitigations

What did Living Water learn from using CAPTure?

  • A cost-effective way to combine exixting information about a catchment. 
  • Simplifies complex information to make decision making easier.
  • Can be used alone or in conjunction with other information tools. Living Water used it with the Catchment Condition Survey and landowner’s FEPs. It is also helpful for landowners of smaller blocks who don’t have a FEP.
  • Allows visualisation of spatial data in an easy-to-understand way which encourages users to get involved.
  • This data is helpful for applying for funding.
  • New or updated datasets can be added as well as new mitigations without having to build a new model.
  • Shows active threats (such as active slips) and potential future threats (for example potentially unstable land), enabling landowners to target immediate problems now and plan for future events.
  • The visual outputs are easy to understand and can be put on any form of media, for example a web platform like Google Earth.
  • Costs are estimated for all mitigations and actions.

Where can I access CAPTure?

Reece Hill - Landsystems

[email protected]