Freshwater Crayfish 12(1): 934-935 (1999)
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Native European crayfish - do they have a future?
Despite increasing interest in conserving native crayfish stocks in Europe the threat of crayfish plague, pollution, habitat destruction, the continued spread of wild populations of alien crayfish, and even ‘a more open Europe’, continue to hamper efforts to ensure their future. The Florence Workshop - The Introduction of Alien Species of Crayfish in Europe - how to make the best of a bad situation? - brought to a head these matters, but what have we learnt and where do we go from here? A summary table of crayfish distribution in Europe will be circulated - there are many gaps! Before conservation and restoration or control programmes are initiated it is essential to know the current distribution of the native and alien species - regionally, nationally and Europe-wide. There is need for a European databank. For any conservation or control programme to be successful populations must be closely monitored - how often is money available for follow-up studies? Some countries are doing a good job at educating crayfish trappers and the public on the dangers of disease and alien crayfish transfer but much more needs to be done. Legislation aimed at conservation of native crayfish and control of alien crayfish is in place in many countries but does it really work? Would governments be willing to set up ‘native crayfish areas’? The message is that as Europeans we need a much more unified effort to protect native crayfish and manage alien crayfish populations. We should be doing more to highlight the IAA Lausanne Resolution (1987) particularly in the light of the EC Habitats Directive and the Rio Convention on Biological Diversity.
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Holdich DM. (1999). Native European crayfish - do they have a future?. Freshwater Crayfish 12(1):934-935. doi:
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