The LIFE RESQUE ALPYR project and also, the previous LIFE LimnoPirineus project, that we lead from the Centre for Advanced Studies in Blanes (CEAB-CSIC), is part of the video report “Abordando la restauración de los lagos de montaña en el Parque Nacional de Aigüestortes i Estany de Sant Maurici” (Tackling restoration in high mountain lakes in the Aigüestortes and Estany de Sant Maurici National Park) of the series “Compartiendo soluciones. Iniciativas de adaptación al cambio climático en parques nacionales y reservas de la biosfera’’ (Sharing solutions: climate change adaptation initiatives in national parks and biosphere reserves). This action, aimed to disseminate good practices, is part of the Afterlife Plan of the LIFE SHARA project (Sharing Awareness and Governance of Adaptation to Climate Change in Spain, 2016-2021), whose objective has been to promote adaptation and increase resilience to climate change in Spain and Portugal.
The Aigüestortes i Estany de Sant Maurici National Park is located in the area of the Pyrenees with the highest density of lakes. In fact, the numbers are impressive: there are almost 200 lakes and more than 600 ponds, although many of them dry up in summer.
Despite these mountain lakes are naturally fishless, they have traditionally been stocked with trout for fishing and, more recently, with minnows used as live bait. These fish species are voracious predators and, therefore, have a severe impact on the amphibian and invertebrate communities of the lakes and on the ecosystem in general, causing serious problems in lake dynamics and water quality or even eutrophication in the case of lakes with the exclusive presence of minnows. Currently, between 35% and 100% of the lakes in the Pyrenees have fish, depending on the valley.
For this reason, one of the main actions of the LIFE RESQUE ALPYR project is the restoration of the natural state of some lakes through the elimination and control of invasive fish species, in order to make possible the recovery of autochthonous species.
The video is available on the Youtube channel of the Centro Nacional de Educación Ambiental – CENEAM (National Center for Environmental Education), with subtitles in English and Catalan.