This week’s quake has had a devastating effect on Kaikoura’s sea life.
Thousands of paua – along with crayfish, butterfish and other sea life – have been left exposed and to die, after the seabed was lifted metres out of the water by Monday’s magnitude 7.8 quake.
Experts believe that it could take years for the shellfish stocks to bounce back.
On Ward beach, the coastal rock shelf was raised by the force of the quake. Local fishermen estimated the rock shelf is now 2m higher. However, in other parts of the coast the seabed has been raised by up to six metres.
The further south towards Kaikoura the worse the effects have been.
The earthquake will put substantial pressure on paua stocks, given the areas affected were where most young paua lived. Experts believe it will take the paua 5 years to return to the current levels.