Sustainable Eel Fisheries in Natura 2000

Sustainable Eel Fisheries in Natura 2000


The Project

The eel is considered by the IUCN as Critically Endangered worldwide. Their populations are decreasing but data on the state of the species is still limited and is mostly obtained through fishery statistics. On the other hand, the management that is being carried out does not seem to be adequate, since the decline of the species has not stopped…

Pesca Anguila

On the other hand, the European normative establishes the obligation that management plans for the species and the subsequent effective management ensure that a certain percentage of eel “escape” from rivers and arrive at the sea. Enabling them to initiate their journey back to the place where they reproduce, on the other side of the Atlantic Ocean.

Anguila europea

ANSE leads the project Sustainable Eel Fisheries in Natura 2000 with the collaboration of Biodiversity Foundation, the Ministry for the Ecological Transition, through Pleamar Programme, co-financed by EMFF (European Maritime and Fisheries Fund). The Project relies on the collaboration of WWF/ Adena Spain (World Wide Fund for Nature), the Fishermen’s Brotherhood of San Pedro del Pinatar, the Group for Research Biology and Conservation Aquatic Vertebrates of the Department of Zoology of the University of Murcia, and the Zoological Society of London (ZSL).

Anguila europea

This initiative aimed at improving the knowledge and the state of conservation of the eel subpopulations in the Iberian southeast. This is in order to gather information on: aspects of their biology, the use they make of different spaces, and the escape of mature individuals. This information can be shared with the general public and the most interested social sectors, and be used to carry out management proposals both medium and long-term.

Throughout the project, activities for the monitoring of eel populations will be carried out mainly in the littoral areas of the Region of Murcia, with special emphasis on the Mar Menor and its surroundings; along with the wetlands in South Alicante. This will include sampling in fish markets and river beds, taking measurements, as well as visual and satellite marking. This project will also involve conducting participatory sessions with stakeholders; such as, meetings and conferences including the participation of fishermen and administrations; among other sectors, for the elaboration of management proposals both medium and long-term. As well as, dissemination and volunteering activities in which the whole population could participate in.

This initiative has been carried out throughout 2018 and will build on works conducted in previous years. Such as, the sampling of channels and wetlands in the surroundings of the Mar Menor and other littoral points of Murcia Region in 2014, or the dissemination and promotion of volunteerism activities undertaken in the Guardianes del Marproject (Guardians of the Sea) in 2016.



Free actions financed by the EMFF (European Maritime and Fisheries Fund)

Logos Pleamar

MAPAMA Fundación Biodiversidad Programa Pleamar FEMP Asociación de Naturalistas del Sureste


This project involves the collaboration of:

Colaboradores Pleamar

WWF Universidad de Murcia Cofradía de Pescadores de S. Pedro del Pinatar Zoological Society of London Región de Murcia MARE