„From dinosaur to sterlet”
As far as you know the sturgeon family (Acipenseridae) has 27 species in the world and lives only in the nordic hemisphere of the globe. Six species are native to the Danube River Basin. Great sturgeon (Huso huso) is the biggest and a long range migrant, the smallest a Sterlet (Acipenser ruthenus) is a short range migrant. According to the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species they are classified as endangered, critically endangered or vulnerable. The Upper Hungarian Danube stretch use to be a spawning place for this last remnants from over 200 million years. Following the completion of Iron Gate I and II. in 1972 and 1985, the migration rute was broken and only occasional catches was recorded. The last great sturgeon in Upper Hungarian Danube branches was caught in 13th. May. 1958.
In the last days of October 1992 the so called provisional solution of Gabcikovo barrage was competed and the water was diverted from the main Danube. Effect was fatal for the fish fauna living in the braided branches. More than 25 years after the Nord-transdanubian Water Direction supported by the Hungarian Government and the European Union finished the restoraton works on the Hungarian side of the inundated areas, opening fish migration routes between branches and the main river.
„From dinosaur to sterlet” this year on 28th. May the Nord-transdanubian Water Directorate organized a special event nearby one of the fish passes where the last great sturgeon was caught. About 100 of young children gathered together to commemorate the importance of fish migration, freedom of fishes, the role of fishways. The Directorate with the youngsters mounted a 1:1 size silhouette in memory of the great sturgeon caught in 1958 and released 100 young sterlet to the Danube.
See you in 2020 on fish migration day: Miklós Pannonhalmi