|Location||Southern Manawatu-Wanganui region, North Island|
|Basin countries||New Zealand|
|Surface area||3.9 km2 (1.5 sq mi)|
The lake, also known as Punahau, lies on a sandy plain 2 kilometres (1.2 mi) west of Levin and 5 kilometres (3 mi) from the coast of the Tasman Sea. It is a shallow lake, only some 2 metres (7 ft) deep, fed by various small streams, and is drained by the Hokio Stream.
The lake was once surrounded by podocarp forest as the centre of a rich wetland ecosystem. Today the trees are gone and the wetland has been substantially drained. The lake is owned by the Māori Muaūpoko iwi, who, with the help of the Horowhenua Lake Trust, are actively attempting to restore the wetland system (that also contains the smaller Lake Papaitonga) to its former state as a conservation area.
Between 1952 and 1987 treated sewage from Levin was dumped into the lake. This has contributed significantly to the current eutrophic state of the lake.
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