The plane at the centre of this morning's mid-air drama over the Bay of Plenty has landed safely.

A Tauranga Council spokesman said the plane made an emergency landing in a paddock at Athenree.

An emergency was earlier declared at Tauranga Airport after the light aircraft reported it was in trouble.

A Fire Service spokesman said there was an issue with the engine.

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Police said the alarm was raised at 10.45am and emergency services had just arrived at the airport .

The Fire Service said two people were on board the aircraft.

The Civil Aviation Authority were now investigating the cause of today's emergency.