Spain's natural river basins network should expand to protect biodiversity in rivers

phys.org | 7/16/2019 | Staff
madalina09madalina09 (Posted by) Level 4
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The European eel (Anguilla anguilla), the freshwater blenny (Salaria fluviatilis), the freshwater pearl mussel (Margaritifera auricularia) and the pronged clubtail (Gomphus graslini) are some of the vulnerable species that are not sufficiently represented in the biodiversity catalog of the Natural River Basins (RNF) in Spain, according to a new article published in the journal Aquatic Conservation: Marine and Freshwater Ecosystems. Researchers Miguel Cañedo-Argüelles and Núria Bonada from the Research Group Freshwater Ecology, Hydrology and Management (FEHM) of the University of Barcelona participated.

The article, focused on the Ebro River basin, includes citizens and other social and institutional agents (water agencies, hydrographic confederations, scientists, non-governmental organizations, environment consultants, etc.) in the design process for the water reserves map in Spain.

Natural - River - Basins - RNF - Spain

The Natural River Basins (RNF) were created in Spain in 2015 to preserve the river areas with no human intervention, and which were in a perfect ecological state. The new study reveals the first conclusions of Reservial (2015-2017), a pioneering project in the European framework to assess the efficiency of the RNF in Spain with the participation of all stakeholders.

This innovative project seeks to shape a network of water basins of the rivers in Spain to guarantee the protection of river regions with the highest ecological and socioenvironmental value, as well as the preservation of water biodiversity. Reservial is led by Núria Bonada, lecturer from the Department of Evolutionary Biology, Ecology and Environmental Sciences and the Biodiversity Research Institute (UB-IRBio) of the U.

Participation - Research - Protocol - Experts - Conservation

With public participation in the research protocol, experts defined the conservation criteria RNF should fulfill to guarantee the protection of biodiversity related to rivers. "About 60 percent of the species that were assessed in the project are not sufficiently represented in the RNF. Some of these species are regarded as vulnerable according to the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN)...
(Excerpt) Read more at: phys.org
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