Thursday, January 19, 2012

Contemplations: Rivers are like people.

I'm researching rivers. Writing about rivers. Systematizing our knowledge-base to produce papers on rivers. What I understand most is that they are more than just features-biology-geology-chemistry; they are individuals. And and you need special communication to understand each individual river. Rivers are like people. 

The Arachthos at Plaka Bridge just downstream of its remarkable gorge - a double gorge with over 30 kms of wild canyon river. We rafted a lot here. And with help of the locals proposed dams were stopped. (Photo: Uwe Dussling). 
The Limnitis in Cyprus, one of the few rivers without a dam in its mid section. Note the unique riparian woodland of Oriental Alder Alnus orientalis. Love Cyprus! (Photo: Gerald Dorflinger).

The Krikelopotemos near Prousos Monastery, Evritania. One of the Acheloos subbasins wonderful country  south of Karpenisi, Eurytania. Still clean and wild.
The Aoos (or Vjose in Albanian) -  in its spectacular canyon, upstream of Konitsa, Epirus. Protected now as the so-called "Pindos Natinal Park". 
Oriental Plane woods - so typical of Greek streams. This is the Grammatiko stream  which ends  up in Lake Vegoritis  in our province of Macedonia. It is beautiful clean cold water - but no fish. It lost its fishes when it completely dried-out in the '90s. Now the fishes can't move upstream from Vegoritis lake - and besides a big part of its is artificially drying-out each summer due to over-pumping for agriculture.
Bear print. We often see this in many many large rivers in northern Greece. This is in the upper part of the Aliakmon, upstream of Kastoria. Bears love rivers.

The Upper Aliakmon in Western Macedonia. A dam will soon flood the entire canyon  (known locally as the Larious Gorge, or Red Gorge). (Photo: from Video by Yorgos Chatzinikolaou).

The "Channel 66" of the Almopeos Tributery, near Veria in Central Macedonia. One of our significantly polluted lowland rivers. The fish fauna was noticeably impacted by the polluted agricultural and fruit-processing effluent dumped into the river.

A flagship for clean coldwater streams. A trout from the upper Acheloos River. Known as the West Balkan Trout Salmo fariodes it  is now considered  a vulnerable species in Greece. 

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