This first workshop was coorganised by the University of Applied Sciences of Western Switzerland (EIL), University of Geneva (LEBA), University of Toulouse III, Ponds Conservation Trust.
Context of the workshop
Ponds are an essential freshwater habitat for plants and animals and they play a central role in maintaining high regional biodiversity. In addition, ponds have many other functions relating to education, recreation, economy, hydrology, culture and aesthetics. Despite their importance, relatively little resources are invested in pond conservation in Europe. Furthermore, the scientific basis for the management and conservation of ponds is currently weak compared to the information available for other freshwater habitats.
Some national environment agencies from countries such as France, the United Kingdom and Switzerland, have recently developed elements of a national strategy for pond conservation. There is now need to strengthen and develop these initiatives and to build a common framework in order to establish a sound scientific basis for pond conservation in Europa.
Scope of the workshop
Three large themes were included in the lectures and posters:
- standardised sampling methods
- pond assessment and monitoring
- the pond in the landscape
Publication of the communications: an issue in 2005 of Aquatic Conservation (international peer-reviewed journal) on “Conservation and monitoring of pond biodiversity” and an issue in 2004 of Archives des Sciences (international peer-reviewed journal).
Working groups (on invitation) were active during the workshop:
Discussion of a European Program for Pond Conservation (according to the EU Water Framework Directive 2000) and establishment of common projects
Discussion of a way to promote a dynamic exchange of information between European research groups and creation of a European Pond Network