Police have called off a search for a man who was believed to be caught in water near Hunua Falls in South Auckland late last night.

Police were called to the falls at 11.19pm, a police spokesman said.

The spokesman said a man seemed to be floating down the river but was using his phone to stay in contact with St John Ambulance services.

However the phone had cut out just past midnight, which was hampering rescue attempts.

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"He was talking to us but he's probably been in the water a while so he'll be getting a bit cold," the spokesman said.

This morning police said they were now confident that the man was no longer in the water.

"Police are making land-based enquiries to confirm the man's whereabouts," a spokesman said.

"There is no active water search."