News Round-Up

Endangered Thames eels to benefit from the latest science


Critically endangered eels in the Thames will benefit from cutting-edge new work that sheds light on how the creatures swim up the river’s estuary.

A traditional London delicacy, the creatures now face even more pressing problems than fishing threats. However, scientists from University of Southampton, HR Wallingford and the University of Nottingham working with ZSL (Zoological Society of London) hope their new study, published in the journal Ecological Modelling, will help conservation efforts.

The European eel is a mysterious and often overlooked creature. After starting their lives at an unknown location in the Sargasso Sea, near Bermuda, the eels drift across the Atlantic on oceanic currents and then navigate up the rivers of Europe, including the Thames, to feed and grow. The eels live in the river for up to 30 years before waiting for a stormy night in autumn to begin the long journey back to their spawning grounds. MORE