Between 16 and 20 August 2018, a team from the University of Bucharest exchanged experience with the Conservatoire d'espaces naturels Conservatoire d’espaces naturels (Rhone-Alpes Division), a body responsible for preserving and protecting natural and semi-natural areas in France.The program included visiting three sites on Ardeche and Drome rivers (both part of the Rhône basin) where ecological reconstruction measures were implemented, in particular fish passages to restore the connectivity of some river sectors. The host of the visit was Marianne Georget, a specialist in ecological reconstruction and manager of Apron II – Programme for the conservation of the Rhone – Apron (Zingel asper) and its habitats (LIFE04 NAT/FR/000083).
One of the objectives of the project afeorementioned, implemented between April 1, 2004 and March 31, 2010, was to improve the genetic exchange and increase the size of the Zingel asper population by building fish passages where they found barriers impossible to pass by this species. That is why we considered it to be an useful example in the implementation of Fish For Life project projectRestoration of migration corridors and habitats for rheophilic fish species in Gilort RiverLIFE16 NAT / RO / 000778, which also includes the construction of two passages for fish.
The conclusions following the visit of Fish for Life project team include:
- • Excellent integration of economic interests and ecological reconstruction and biodiversity conservation (eg the Ardeche River is highly used for tourism activities, especially rafting);
- • Different technical solutions of ecological reconstruction, adapted to the particular conditions of each point, for processes that interrupt the connectivity of a river, which can be adapted and used for the thresholds of Targu Carbunesti and Albeni;
- • The dramatic impact of fragmentation of a river basin connectivity on the population of a species (Zingel asper was at the beginning of the 20th century present in the entire Rhone basin, approximately 1,700 km, and currently this species is present only on around 380 km);
- • Reconstruction measures begin with the most vulnerable species; if they are efficient for that species, the other less vulnerable species will also be, most often, favored by that measures, and so their populations will also grow;
- • The need for integrated management and a medium and long-term river basin strategy, as well as a strategy for threatened fish species.
Below we present a photo gallery made during the visit. Details of Zingel asper management (including LIFE project activity reports, action plan for species, technical details of fish passages) are available at http://www.aprondurhone.fr/
Livron-sur-Drome, râul Drome
Crest, râul Drome
Lanas, râul Ardeche