edna

Water test to end the great newt scam

Claiming that they’ve seen protected greater crested newts on a proposed site is something that is often used by anti-housing campaigners. It adds costs to any planning application and can also delay the development process for many months as ecologists have to make repeated visits to a site to try to find evidence. Now a simple…
Melanie Sønderup at trial site for crush concrete filter bed.

Can building waste reduce water pollution?

Freshwater ecosystems such as lakes and rivers can often be affected by pollution from run-off. One of the biggest problems is phosphorous which is often used as a fertiliser. When it gets into rivers and lakes it can cause algal blooms which can kill other wildlife. But old concrete could help solve this problem. A team…
river safari

World’s biggest aquarium opens in Singapore

The world’s largest freshwater aquarium has opened to the public at the nature themed River Safari park in Singapore. The aquarium seeks to highlight the wealth of species that live in the Amazon River of South America. Exhibits include manatees that have been moved to the aquarium from their previous home at Singapore Zoo. The…
perch

Drugged up fish become greedy and bold

Modern medication is a god-send for many people who are suffering illness and disease. Prescription drug use is also booming across the world but not all drugs administered stays in the body. A large proportion goes through the body to end up in waste-water and some will pass through water treatment to end up in…
bio-energy station

Capturing electricity from wetlands

Wetlands and marshlands could soon be offering more than just flood prevention and water purification as part of their ecosystem services. A researcher in the Netherlands has been able to tap the electricity generated from plant soil interactions and the technology is soon to go global. Wageningen University researcher Marjolein Helder undertook the research as part of her Phd and she…
leeches

Are leeches a new tool for conservationists?

It may sound like something out of a science fiction movie but it looks like the common leech could become a major new tool for wildlife researchers and conservationists. A new study by Copenhagen Zoo and the University of Copenhagen used blood that leeches sucked up to determine the biodiversity of a Vietnam forest. The results of the…
damselfly

Restored wetlands are a shadow of their former self.

Wetlands have been involved in a losing battle ever since humans first started agriculture. Draining land for agriculture and development has gone on for hundreds of years but in recent times conservationists have been trying to turn things around with wetland restoration schemes. But it’s not just restoration of degraded wetlands that is now becoming common place.…
fish biodiversity drops 25% upstream of dams

Dammed rivers lose up to 25% of fish biodiversity

A newly published study has demonstrated that rivers upstream of dams and weirs could have as much as a quarter of it’s biodiversity lost. The biggest losers tend to be the fish that live in fast water currents and those are also the fish species which tend to be endangered. Fish diversity drops 25% and invertebrate diversity…
monmouthshire and brecon canal

British Waterways 2011 wildlife survey launched

This years wildlife survey of canals, rivers and reservoirs has been launched by British Waterways. Just as last years survey asked the public to keep a special eye out for kingfishers, this years target species are bats. It’s not just bats though, British Waterways wants details of all your wildlife sightings between now and September.