Towards the conservation of freshwater fish: Iberian Rivers as an example of threats and management practices

Towards the conservation of freshwater fish: Iberian Rivers as an example of threats and... The current freshwater fish fauna crisis is such that natural resource managers urgently need to identify priorities and understand the management consequences of actions aimed at maximizing the preservation of biodiversity. Freshwater research is often poorly linked to conservation ecology; and interdisciplinary studies illustrating examples of freshwater ecosystem conservation are scarce. The Iberian Peninsula has a long history of anthropogenic disturbance that has led to the poor conservation status of its ichthyofauna, with 52 % of species now catalogued as critically endangered, endangered or vulnerable, according to UICN criteria. This paper gives an overview of the main threats (habitat degradation, hydrological alterations and exotic species) that have altered the function and connectivity of Iberian rivers. Case-study examples are provided to analyse the repercussions of these threats and the management actions planned or already performed in these systems. The interaction of many threats is responsible for native fish decline. However, freshwater managers and researchers should not let the trees prevent them from seeing the overall wood, when seeking to achieve practical solutions with the best balanced cost benefit and the collaboration of all ecosystem researchers and stakeholders. Conservation efforts should be focused on the preservation of ecological processes, in order to achieve the goals of the Water Framework Directive and guarantee the conservation of Iberian native fish species. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Reviews in Fish Biology and Fisheries Springer Journals

Towards the conservation of freshwater fish: Iberian Rivers as an example of threats and management practices

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Publisher
Springer Netherlands
Copyright
Copyright © 2012 by Springer Science+Business Media B.V.
Subject
Life Sciences; Freshwater & Marine Ecology; Zoology
ISSN
0960-3166
eISSN
1573-5184
D.O.I.
10.1007/s11160-012-9275-5
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

The current freshwater fish fauna crisis is such that natural resource managers urgently need to identify priorities and understand the management consequences of actions aimed at maximizing the preservation of biodiversity. Freshwater research is often poorly linked to conservation ecology; and interdisciplinary studies illustrating examples of freshwater ecosystem conservation are scarce. The Iberian Peninsula has a long history of anthropogenic disturbance that has led to the poor conservation status of its ichthyofauna, with 52 % of species now catalogued as critically endangered, endangered or vulnerable, according to UICN criteria. This paper gives an overview of the main threats (habitat degradation, hydrological alterations and exotic species) that have altered the function and connectivity of Iberian rivers. Case-study examples are provided to analyse the repercussions of these threats and the management actions planned or already performed in these systems. The interaction of many threats is responsible for native fish decline. However, freshwater managers and researchers should not let the trees prevent them from seeing the overall wood, when seeking to achieve practical solutions with the best balanced cost benefit and the collaboration of all ecosystem researchers and stakeholders. Conservation efforts should be focused on the preservation of ecological processes, in order to achieve the goals of the Water Framework Directive and guarantee the conservation of Iberian native fish species.

Journal

Reviews in Fish Biology and FisheriesSpringer Journals

Published: Jul 12, 2012

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