Manage and restore backwater habitats

Effectiveness for Biological Quality Elements

The restoration of a backwater that was monitored over a six year period was shown to result in improvements in fish diversity and biomass. 12 adult fish species were present at the site before backwater restoration. This increased to 20 species afterwards. It was concluded that development of the backwater conferred benefits as a refuge, spawning site and nursery (Hohausova & Juraijda, 2005).

Willby & Eaton (1996) found that backwater areas connected to the main channels of canal networks promoted diversity in submerged and emergent aquatic macrophytes, provided the backwaters were of a large enough area.

Academic references

Hohausova, E. and Jurajda, P. (2005) Restoration of a river backwater and its influence on fish assemblage. Czech Journal of Animal Science. 50, 10, pp473.

Willby, N.J. and Eaton, J.W. (1996) Backwater habitats and their role in nature conservation on navigable waterways. Hydrobiologia. 340, pp333-338.