Sunday, June 17, 2018

Boat-based Electrofishing in Greece

Northern Greece
Late May 2018

In 2007 we commissioned Greece's first aluminum skiff to be used exclusively for electrofishing in deep inland waters. Now just over a decade later we return to the rivers in the first stage of a 6 year river EU WFD monitoring project. These are the first three sites sampled this year. 

  • The Laspias River, in Thrace
  • The Mega River, Tributary of the Pinios, Thessaly
  • The Pinios, downstream of the Enipeas confluence, Thessaly. 

Just some shots of the first team expedition and part of the 'training session' that took place a few weeks ago. 

The Laspias River in Western Thrace (near Avdira), poorly known and very polluted. (Laspias = "Muddy", formerly known as the Dolmuz Orman or Wild boar Forest). 

Laspias River.

Found a nice place to launch boat under the highway bridge, Laspias River.

Access is always a challenge; Laspias River.

Laspias River: No fish makes us happy too. We where amazed, expecting 7 species...Its a sign of sever degradation no doubt.

Laspias River: Just a single Gasterosteus gymnurus (=aculeatus) found. A fish that does migrate up and down the river, finding non-polluted spots, but surviving also in polluted and brackish waters.

Laspias River: One of the most tolerant fishes to pollution and anthropogenic change in running waters, a fry of Carassius gibellio (about 25 mm TL). 

Laspias River: The Cobitid loaches also survive well in really polluted conditions, this is Cobitis strumicae

Laspias River: And a fish that can survive anyting, salt water, really polluted eutrophic conditions, low oxygen, whatever...Eastern Mosquitofish Gambusia hollbrooki

Getting groceries from a small mixed Muslim-Christian village near the Nestos River (I think its the village of Evlalos). Roberta Barbieri is driving HCMR's 1999 huge Pajero jeep trailing the electrofishing skiff.

Mega River in Thessaly. Found new landing site, Mega2 we are calling it. 

Mega River, a totally channelized and straightened weir-dominated lowland canal (actually a river, and definitely heavily modified). 

Dimitris Kommatas and Roberta Barbieri - our teachers during the training session.

Mega River: Long-time expert with the 50 kg electro-generator, Nick Koutsikos with newly contracted Maria Hamoglou (of Lake Karla fame)- on the job.

Mega River: Moving fast among training trials along Mega2.

Mega River: Quick set-up to photograph fishes by Roberta Barbieri.

Mega River: Vimba melanops.

Mega River: Rutilus rutilus.

Mega River: we assume Romanogobio elimeius (but at this size, difficult to be sure).

Mega River: Pachychilon macedonicum. Note variation in colouring among individuals (this one is recently dead - 5 mins dead). 

Pinios River:Pachychilon macedonicum (recently dead).

Pinios River: Pachychilon macedonicum (recently dead).

Pinios River: Pachychilon macedonicum (same individual as above, alive).

Pinios River: Its not at all easy for two jeeps to find a place to launch the skiff. 

Pinios River: Place to launch a skiff, Enipeas river near its confluence with the Pinios. 

Pinios River: Place to launch a skiff, Enipeas river near its confluence with the Pinios. 

Pinios River: Place to launch a skiff, Enipeas river near its confluence with the Pinios. 

Pinios River: Yours truly with newly contracted ichthyologist Alexander Ntakis, a man with a smooth hand at the motor and all-around long experience at seamanship. 

Pinios River: Dimitris Kommatas, captain, maybe pirate too.

Pinios River: Alexander Ntakis with Roberta Barbieri.

Pinios River: Nektarios Kalaitzakis with Alex.

Pinios River

Pinios River: 11 species- but during spring flow very difficult to get a good representative composition. 

Pinios River: Lepomis gibbosus (trust me they are very tasty). 

Pinios River: boat back in order after a really long haul. 

Enipeas river near the confluence, near the village of Keramidi. One of the nicest places on the Pinios valley.

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