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Release of 290 000 pikeperch in Himmerfjärden, Sweden

The first of three releases that will be executed during a three year period bagan this week. The total amount of released pikeperch will  be around 900 000. The project is the first of its kind in a sea area and the purpose is to research if an increase of predator fish will change the relation between the organisms in the foodweb so that the effects of eutrophication reduces.

The result of this project could be an essential tool to reduce eutrophication that might supplement other actions and water treatment plants. This could also show the importance of a well managed fish stock. The first results  will be presented in 2011. The project is lead by Sture Hansson, Professor in Systems Ecology, at Stockholm University and is financed by Baltic Sea 2020.

The release in Himmerfjärden, one of the most researched sea areas, will be the take off of the practical part of this research project that started in January 2008. During the first pahse the researchers have gathered data from the fish stock and ecosystem in Himmerfjärden to estimate the range of pikeperch for the release and the expected effects. Diminished stock of predator fish might have contributed to worsen the environmental effects of the leakage of nutrients from land.

Similar projects has been done in lakes and the results there has been very positive with a visable reduce of nutrients. Now the first experiment will be conducted in open sea to investigate how eutrophication in the Baltic Sea could be reduced.
On September 30th 2009, the first release of 300 000 pikeperches was done in Himmerfjärden.

For more information please contact:
Sture Hansson, Stockholms University, +46 8-164248
Coonrad Stralka, Baltic Sea 2020, +46 8- 673 97 62