Two men and a child were rescued in the early hours of this morning after they failed to return from a fishing trip - sparking a search and rescue operation.

Emergency services were deployed to Te Ngaio Point Rd, Tapora after the trio went missing on the Kaipara Harbour overnight.

It was not clear whether the trio was in a boat or fishing from land.

Police received a report about the missing people shortly after 1am and the Eagle helicopter later located them about 400m from shore.


Auckland Westpac Rescue Helicopter was also tasked to assist and after they were discovered by police, prepared to winch the trio to safety.

However, they made it to land before the arrival of the rescue helicopter - which was first dispatched around 3.50am.

"Westpac 2 then airlifted the patients to awaiting nearby ambulance where all three were assessed by our medical team," a rescue helicopter spokesman said.

"They were in a minor condition and all three were warmed up and sent on their way. Transportation to hospital wasn't required."

LandSAR crew also assisted in the search for the trio, however, chief executive Carl McOnie wasn't across details of the incident.

Regardless, he applauded the efforts of all involved, "They're a very professional, very well trained group of individuals."

Meanwhile, police nabbed a man hiding in mangroves near Whangārei after he cut off his electronic monitoring anklet and went on the run yesterday.

An officer and a police dog tracked the man through paddocks, bush and muddy mangrove flats for nearly 90-minutes.


The drama started with a short pursuit, south of Whangārei near Portland, about 10.40am but the 21-year-old from Northland was later nabbed.