Funded by the European Union, the Institute of Hydrobiology of the Technische Universität Dresden and the Faculty of Fisheries and Protection of Waters of the University of South Bohemia in České Budějovice are working together to improve the cross-border coordination of aquatic biodiversity conservation in the Elbe and Ohře (Eger) rivers and their Saxon and northern Czech tributaries.
Elbe River is as well in Germany as in Czech Republic of great importance for water management and shipping. On the other hand, the river and its numerous tributaries are also habitat of many aquatic organisms. However, in the Czech-Saxon border region, there are only few localities left that are probably the last refuges of endangered native species in the region (e.g. noble crayfish, stone crayfish, European bullhead). Because Elbe River is a federal waterway, it is an important pathway of invasive organisms endangering the native species, as well.
River Elbe upstream of Bad Schandau © S. Worischka
Therefore, aim of the project is to build a cross-border network for cooperation between researchers, administration and public and develop new solutions and tools for management of invasive species. Parts of the project are
- joined field monitoring by both research institutes in cooperation with Saxonian and Czech Angler associations and state agencies
- genetic analysis of European bullhead population from Saxony and the Czech border region, because European bullheads (Cottus gobio) are an endangered fish species which occurrence decreases.
- experiments in artificial flow channels, in order to investigate the interaction between native and invasive species and understanding ecological connections.
- public relations, in order to sensitize the population to this problem and give interested citizens the opportunity to participate.
- the development of a PWA (mobile application) for identification and reporting of invasive or endangered native species.
European bullhead (Cottus gobio) © S. Worischka
The project area includes Saxony and the three Czech districts Usti n. L., Liberec and Karlovy Vary. Funding period of the project is October 2018 to September 2020.
24-h sampling River Elbe © L. Richter