Samvel Pipoyan: Armenia Losing Its Local Valuable Fish Species

Samvel Pipoyan: Armenia Losing Its Local Valuable Fish Species


The contemporary fish world of Armenia has undergone changes in recent decades and continues undergoing radical changes, which are conditioned with man-made multifactor impact on ecosystems.

Samvel Pipoyan, Professor at Biology and Teaching Methodology Department, Khachatur Abovyan Armenian State Pedagogical University, Dr. in Biological Sciences, covered this and other problems at the round table entitled 'Vulnerability of Ecosystems Conditioned with Climate Change' held at EcoLur Pres Club.

'If climate change causes increase in temperature and reduction in precipitation, springs will continue drying. If springs get dry, it means we will lose, first of all, trout from the family Salmonidae, which spawns at the beginning of spring,' Samvel Pipoyan said.

The ichthyologist said, 'Many species from the  family Cyprinidae spawn in spring migrating up the river. Nevertheless, the dams of around 85 reservoirs are an essential obstacle to their way, as proper fish ways are missing. As a result, migrating fish gather under the dams and get poached without spawning. We experience problems with fish pathways not only in relation with SHPPs, but also reservoirs. The other problem with experience with reservoirs is drastic fluctuations of water level. Fish species in reservoirs mostly spawn in the littoral area spawning on the littoral vegetation. If reservoir water is let out for irrigation or other purposes, water level drastically decreases, which results in the elimination of the caviar. Besides, drastic changes in the water level cause essential changes in the forage of the young fish, and, as a result, many young fish can't find proper forage and die from lack of food.'

Samvel Pipoyan also listed the local fish species, which face reduced or got extinct. According to Samvel Pipoyan, in 1960-2014 the fish species in Armenia got from 24 to 40. 'From the ichthyological viewpoint, Armenia can be considered as one of the 'best' polluted countries in the world. We are gradually losing our local fish world,' the ichthyologist said.

To solve the aforementioned problems Samvel Pipoyan offered:

· To build fish pathways near the reservoirs,

· To review the standards for environmental flow in the rivers during SHPP operation, while in low-water months to stop the operation of SHPPs in the rivers with much fish, 

· To male fish pathways compliant with standards,

· To review the operation of HPPs and reservoirs from ichthyological viewpoint,

· To include trout in the Red Book of Armenia. 


The “EcoLur” Informational NGO is organizing series of events aimed at public involvement  and awareness raising targeted to the future climate change policy directions and development of Intended Nationally Determined Contributions (INDC) of the Republic of Armenia under UN Climate Change Framework Convention (UNFCCC).

The material is prepared by 'EcoLur' Informational NGO under UNDP Climate Change Program, within the framework of ARM-002/2015 Contract. The views expressed in this publication are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily represent those of the United Nations, including UNDP, or the UN Member States.

16:31 June 03, 2015


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