Fish and molluscs disappear fast, shows The European Red List

2011 - 11 - 22

European rivers are not in a good condition. This is shown by The European Red List, published on Monday by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN). According to the researchers findings a big part of freshwater fish and molluscs have fallen into the category of endangered species.

The experts assessed the state of aproximately six thousand European animals and plants They have found out, that 44% of all freshwater molluscs, 37% of freshwater fish, 23% of amphibians, 20% of a selection of terrestrial molluscs, 19% of reptiles, 15% of mammals and of dragonflies, 13% of birds, 11% of a selection of saproxylic beetles, 9% of butterflies and are now under threat. The same bad news had to be then written also about 467 kinds of vascular plants.

“Although the European Union pays a big attention to water cleaness improvement, it becomes apparent it is not still enough. Just the life in rivers and lakes is, according to the latest scientists findings, getting worse the most,“ Dalibor Dostal, the director of nature conservation organization European Wildlife, commented the scientists conclusions

Freshwater fish are threatened mainly because of excessive fishing, rivers pollution, loss of habitats and alien species introduction. “The introduction of unoriginal species represents a relic today. Despite that sport fishermen in many countries still release a lot of introduced species into the rivers, some if which then mean a risk for natural European biodiversity,“ completed Dalibor Dostal. The European Union should, after him, strongly restrict or ban the introduction of unoriginal species. A sturgeon belongs to the most endangered fish kinds in Europe. There are seven kinds of a sturgeon altogether which are threatened on the continent.

European nature does not enjoy a good health although there are more natural areas which are protected in Europe. The European commission has published some information according to which the network of nature conservation areas Natura 2000 has enlarged now by nearly 18, 800 square kilometres, including the increase of marine sites which cover 17, 000 square kilometres. This conserved areas covers almost 18% of the EU’s landmass and more than 145, 000 square kilometres of its seas.

“The network of protected sites is a good basis for nature conservation in Europe, but there is still a lot of work ahead us until there are the endangerd species in all the localities really well protected and until the precious areas are interconnected by functional wildlife-corridors. So that it is about a real green network, not only individual isoleated localities,“ concluded Dalibor Dostal.

The main countries involved in the latest expansion of Natura 2000 areas are Great Britain, France, Belgium, Greece, Cyprus, Lithuania, Hungary and Italy.

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