World Fish Migration Day: Vravrona Greece Celebration!

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World Fish Migration Day: Vravrona Greece Celebration!



May 24, 2014

Vravrona is a fairly well-known archeological site 30 km from Athens...
Today we did something different: glorify the fish world! And in a small stream next to the site, the Erasinos River, with a particular focus on migratory fishing.

THE WORD We celebrated FISH MIGRATION DAY by looking at the fish and the river with scientists. We tested the fish with electrofish in five places in the current and many participants were impressed by the nature, the fish, what we do...

And today there was reason to celebrate: We found the Erasinos River “different” than the one we tried five years ago.
Results:

a) Last time we sampled we had no Marathon minnows in the creek , except for a small population near Artemis source (near the wooden bridge in HOS, for those who have a location now).

b) When we tried it last time, we saw that the river was FULL of mosquito fish. A highly invasive alien species believed to compete with the similarly sized Marathon minnow and globally threatened....

c) When we last took samples, the riverbed was cleared of phragmite reeds and the Mugilids swam to the wooden bridge.

d) Last time we didn't catch any eels .

Today we had:

a) The fish community was dominated by marathon minnows: they were ubiquitous, plentiful but mostly small (mostly very juvenile). It was hard to convince our small audience that this is an endangered species!!!

b) We caught and observed less than ten mosquito fish. (The unbelievable rarity of this heavy rain!!!). Where did these alien invaders go???

c) The Phragmites choked the course of the river (that's a really big change in 5 years...). The Mugilids rose about 200 m above the bridge over the mouth of the river. All Mugilids were small mullets (Mugil cephalus). Today we had Marathon Minnows with Mugilids also about 30 meters. Down the bridge over the estuary (they were almost in the water... Posidonia floating on the debris... WOW!!!!).

d) We caught 5 eels! And we didn't really try. He also looks young (2). Great!! The most endangered migratory fish were caught and photographed with the utmost care.

Everything has changed in five years!!

Big questions of science, questions of nature conservation - soon we will be back in Vravrona ...

Reason to celebrate!






















* Our work was organized by the EcoFlow project with support from the public depository organisation, the Hellenic Ornithological Society. I would like to thank the participants from the Hellenic Center for Marine Research, the University of Athens and the Hellenic Ornithological Society. Another successful partnership. Next time we will do better. Check out that last photo...we loved it!






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