Inland Fisheries

Regional Conference on river habitat restoration for inland fisheries in the Danube river basin and adjacent Black Sea areas

Rehabilitation & mitigation

Inland waterway management is complex and faces unique challenges as inland waterways have a variety of users. The mixture and overlap of local, regional, national and at times international regulations exacerbate the problem of managing inland waterways. The Danube is an international river flowing through many European countries and its health has direct impact on environmental conditions in the Black Sea, especially for migratory species that require the sea and river habitats for parts of their life cycle. Pressures such as capture fisheries, fish farming, electricity generation, crop irrigation and dredging for transportation routes to name a few are among the reasons for the degeneration of this important waterway. These are issues that face many rivers on the European continent.  In this context, the regional conference ‘River habitat restoration for inland fisheries in the Danube River basin and adjacent Black Sea areas’ was held from 13 to 15 November 2018 in Bucharest, Romania. This event was organised by the Regional office for Europe and Central Asia of the Food and Agriculture Organisation of the United Nations (REU) in partnership with the International Organisation for the Development of Fisheries and Aquaculture in Europe (EUROFISH) and the European Inland Fisheries and Aquaculture Advisory Commission (EIFAAC) and hosted by the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development and the Ministry of Waters and Forests of Romania. This event offered a unique opportunity for stakeholders to share their experience and help raise awareness of the issues affecting the sustainability of the Danube river and Black Sea regions. Over 100 attendees from local community level fisherman and farmers to academics, and national and EU level representatives interacted with to 27 invited speakers. Each speaker focused on one of four session subjects ‘Valuing Inland Fisheries Resources’, ‘Conservation and Management’, ‘Regulatory Framework’ and ‘Shared Country Experiences’. A round table discussion concluded the conference, with all participants invited to express their thoughts and discuss the issues affecting sustainability and inland fisheries in the Danube river basin and the Black Sea. The key findings from this concluding discussion have been complied into a list of conference recommendations included in this publication.