Browsing All Posts filed under »restoration«

Restoring urban streams: a new twist

March 30, 2019


  Urban stream environments typically display symptoms of degradation – such as increased temperatures, nutrient and chemical pollution, simplified habitat structure and reduced biodiversity – that are collectively referred to as the Urban Stream Syndrome.  Freshwater scientists generally accept that urban stream degradation is driven mainly by hydrological changes associated with stormwater runoff over impervious […]

Getting river history right

March 30, 2019


  Information on past climate patterns can prove invaluable when assessing the responses of freshwater ecosystems to environmental change, but what are the implications for ecological understanding if beliefs about climate history are incorrect?  This question has been explored by scientists who used the Murray River, Australia’s largest river system, as a case study.  Hydrologically, […]

Putting aquatic animals back in place

March 30, 2019


  The practice of replacing species that have been lost from degraded environments has become widespread over the last two decades, but most animal reintroductions have involved vertebrate rather than invertebrate species, and reintroductions are still relatively rare in freshwater settings.  However, because there’s often a lack of source populations in the vicinity of river […]

Understanding how fish benefit from river restoration

January 14, 2019

Comments Off on Understanding how fish benefit from river restoration

Although relationships between fish traits and environmental factors are well known, there have been few attempts to use fish traits to interpret the outcomes of stream restoration projects.  German scientists set out to do this by analyzing  data from a tributary of the Rhine River, which had a long history of channelization, bank fixation, riparian […]

Recognising the biodiversity value of ponds

January 14, 2019

Comments Off on Recognising the biodiversity value of ponds

Although pond habitats have been relatively neglected by conservationists, several studies have shown that ponds can contribute more to regional biodiversity than running waters.  Because they are isolated, small in size and often poorly protected by conservation programmes, pond ecosystems are highly vulnerable to environmental threats such as those presented by urbanisation.  To help provide […]

How the food web affects river restoration

October 8, 2018

Comments Off on How the food web affects river restoration

River restoration commonly  concentrates on improving habitat quality for threatened fish populations.  However, because stream fish are strongly influenced by food availability, competition and predation, a case can be made for also incorporating food web modelling into the restoration process.  A group of environmental scientists developed an ecosystem model and applied it to a river-floodplain […]

Successful stream restoration can take decades

July 5, 2018

Comments Off on Successful stream restoration can take decades

Although assessments of the success of stream restoration projects depend on post-restoration monitoring, in most cases the monitoring period ends long before the system reaches full functional maturity.   Given this situation, it can be helpful to refer to performance curves that forecast how stream restoration projects will perform over time.  American environmental scientists set out […]