French Fish Swim Back To Clean Water Of River Seine In Paris
- 10 January 2012
- Maryruth Belsey Priebe
- Hits: 11159
Salmon are better known for floating in garlic butter than for swimming by the Eiffel Tower in Paris' River Seine. But times are a changing.
Salmon and dozens of other fish species are returning to the River Seine in Paris, thanks to improved water quality. Atlantic salmon, a European endangered fish species, along with other species of fish, had called the River Seine home for thousands of years until the 18th century when the population sizes started to decline, until only three species remained resident in the Seine in 1995 ...
However, since the mid 1990s, authorities have made efforts to improve the quality of water in the Seine by treating waste. As a result, the river has begun to be recolonized by salmon since the beginning of 2000. Given that salmon are highly sensitive to pollution, they are considered a bio-indicator of river health, suggesting that the Seine has indeed undergone a significant transformation.
The French National Institute for Agricultural Research (INRA) said the disappearance of fish species from the River Seine was caused by ...
- Increased number of obstacles that altered the lifecycle of various fish species
- Channeling of water courses that radically changed their habitat
- Reduction in water quality because of agricultural, industrial, and domestic waste
- Long periods of low or very low levels of dissolved oxygen in the downstream course because of pollution
The French National Institute for Agricultural Research INRA has concluded that the results seen in the River Seine may serve as a model for other waterways that are currently suffering from a loss of fish species. In particular, they note that the Seine has not been used for fish farms, nor have fish species been reintroduced into the area for repopulation purposes. This may suggest that by simply improving water quality, fish will naturally repopulate the habitat voluntarily.
In Paris, the growth in the fish population has spawned a new type of fishing community known as Streetfishers.
Streetfishers usually cast their lines near famous landmarks on the Seine River, like the Notre Dame Cathedral and the Eiffel Tower. Mostly catch and release fishers, Streetfishers are seriously in vogue. While Seine River Salmon are not showing up on Paris bistro menus yet, Parisians are dreaming of the day. They can almost taste it.