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Ecological aspects of the Tisa River Basin

Sárkány-Kiss, A. & Hamar, J. (eds): Ecological aspects of the Tisa River Basin. l0 years anniversary regional conference 21nd – 24th March 2002. Târgu-Mureş, Romania, Târgu-Mureş - Szeged - Szolnok, 2002.



We have been exploring the rivers belonging to the Tisa River Basin for ten years, our work having been organized by the Tisza Klub, Szolnok, Hungary and the Pro Europa League Târgu-Mureş, Romania. The two nongovernmental organizations signed a cooperation agreement on 27th April 1991. The most important objective of the cooperation was "the creation of a scientific database, with special regard to the common river valleys" and "the achievement of environmental and educational aims". For the survey of the common rivers we have recruited a multidisciplinary work-team of Romanian and Hungarian experts. The germinating power of the work has made our professional and personal relationship closer and closer. With a strong belief in our joint power, we have made bolder and bolder plans. More and more Romanian, Hungarian, Ukrainian and Slovakian colleagues and social organizations have been invited to cooperate.

Our surveys have been extended to the Upper Tisa and its numerous tributaries.

Working with nongovernmental organisations made us possible to invite well-known specialists from every country from the Carpathian Basin. We have revealed the real condition of the surveyed rivers, we have drawn the attention of the executive and supervising state institutions to the endangered river sections, to the natural riches we intend to protect, and we have elaborated a matter-of-fact documentation of environmental protection. Our results were published in the first four volumes of the Tiscia Monograph Series, with studies about the Mureş/Maros, the Someş/Szamos, the Criş/Körös and the Upper Tisa Rivers. There is an upcoming volume about the Bodrog River, too.

After eleven years of working together we felt that the time has come to summarize and analyse together our results, to draw the main consequences based on knowledge of more than ten rivers and to list the main tasks for nature- and environment protection. That is why we organised the "Conference of the Tisa River Basin Experts" on March 22-24, 2002. We addressed three questions to participants in the conference invitation:
- Why are our rivers ill?
- Are we taken serious by the executive bodies?
- How to go further?

The answers for the first question were given by the contributions presented at the conference and in this volume, giving substantial completion of the studies already published.

The fact that the specialists warning call is still inconvenient to executive bodies was clearly shown by the absence of their invited representatives. This gives the answer to our second question. We believe that the new EU Water Framework Directive, which obliges the members to treat the rivers as habitats, hopefully will bring serious changes in EU-member aspirant countries, too.

The "How to go further" question is partially answered by the papers published in this volume, when they present new methods of ecological water-qualification or discuss theoretical issues like "Flood-plain research at different spatial scales". The participants agreed that after compiling the first basic database of river valleys it is time for well designed monitoring schemes to follow the changing tendencies. In the same time, we should also concentrate on revealing cause-consequence relationships. The planning and execution of this work cannot be done properly by nongovernmental organisations. We were delighted to see that our work was more and more supported by universities and research centres like the Ecology Department of the Szeged University, the Uzgorod University, the Debrecen University, the Babeş-Bolyai University, the Lucian Blaga University (Sibiu), the University of Oradea, the Grigore Antipa Museum, the Fish Culture Research Institute at Szarvas, Environmental Agencies from Szolnok, Debrecen and Gyula.

The river research initialized by the nongovernmental organisations stimulated a series of cooperations between the institutes of neighbour countries:

- between 1999-2001 during a two year research project intitled "Investigation of the Natural Resources of the Mureş River for Sustainable Development" (Research Support Scheme of the Open Society Support Foundation) a common eight member research team of the Babeş-Bolyai and Debrecen University surveyed the whole lenght of the Mureş/Maros river, registering the changes occured since the 1991 survey.
- the „Research of the habitat-corridors on Tisa river and its tributaries" project is founded by the Hungarian Environment Protection Ministry and it is listed among the projects coordinated by the European Centre for Nature Conservation.
- a complex research programme to study the freshwater living communities exposed to cyanide and heavy metal pollution in the Lăpuş/Lápos, the Someş/Szamos and the Tisa rivers, supported by the Hungarian Academy of Sciencies and the Arany János Foundation of the Hungarian Academy of Science.
- Investigation of the Risk of Cyanide in Gold Leaching on Health and Environment in Central Asia and Central Europe (Into Copernicus Project).

We woud like to thank the help of those specialists who were not participating directly in our river expeditions but followed our work and gave us advice: Dr. László Gallé, Head of Ecology Department at Szeged University; Prof. Dr. Marian Traian Gomoiu, Academician, Deputy General director of the National Institute of Marine Geology and Geoecology, professor of the Ovidius University Constants; Dr. Dan Munteanu, Academician, BirdLife Romania; Dr. György Dévai, Head of the Ecology Department at Debrecen University and Dr. János Tardy. Special thanks are addressed to Professor László Gallé and Dr. László Körmöczi who offered us the possibility to publish our results in volumes of the Tiscia monograph series.



Pro Europa League 
Târgu Mureş, Romania

Tisza Klub
Szolnok, Hungary





Andrei Sárkány-Kiss and József Hamar: Preface

László Gallé: Flood-plain research at different spatial scales

S. M. Stoyko: The causes of catastrophic floods in the Transcarpathian region and the system of ecological prophylactic measures for their prevention

László Fodorpataki and Judit Papp: Usefulness of eukaryotic and prokaryotic microorganisms in the investigation of water quality in the Mureş river

Constantin Drăgulescu: Phytodiversity of Transylvanian hydrographic basins

Katalin Margóczi, Constantin Drăgulescu, Kunigunda Macalik, Orsolya Makra: Vegetation description of representative habitat complexes along the Maros (Mureş) river

Diana Cupsa: Some aspects of the modifications of the aquatic Oligochaeta fauna in the Crisuri rivers between 1994-1998

Tamás Domokos, Klára Váncsa, Andrei Sárkány-Kiss : Malacofaunistical study of the flood-plain of the Mureş river in the Zam region

Ioan Sîrbu, Andrei Sárkány-Kiss: Endangered freshwater mollusc species from the eastern tributaries of the Tisa river (Romanian territory)

Andrei Sárkány-Kiss, Nicolae Mihăilescu, Ioan Sîrbu: Communities' structure and heavy metals content of the Unionidae (Mollusca, Bivalvia) from the Danube delta biosphere reserve

Sárkány-Kiss Andrei and Braun Mihály: Using bivalves in an alternative testing method of freshwater pollution with heavy metals

András Szító: The ecological state of the Tisa river and its tributaries indicated by the macroinvertebrates

Lujza Ujvárosi: The present status of threat to the caddis flies (Trichoptera) from the rivers Şomeş, Mureş and Crişuri catchment area in Romania

Petru M. Bănărescu: Species and subspecies of fish and lampreys endemic or almost endemic to the drainage area of the Tisa river

Petru M. Bănărescu: Fish species with restricted ranges in the Tisa river drainage area

L C. Telcean, P. V. Bănărescu: Modifications of the fish fauna in the upper Tisa river and its southern and eastern tributaries

Sándor Wilhelm, Ákos Harka, Zoltán Sallai: The prevailing anthropogenic effects on certain smaller northwestern Romanian rivers

Gyöngyvér Mara: Major threats for amphibian and reptile species in the Transylvanian rivers' basins. Recommended monitoring methods

Ferenc Kósa, László Demeter, Tamás Papp, Friedrich Philippi, Hans-Johann Lutsch, Károly György: Distribution, population size and dynamics of the white stork (Ciconia ciconia l) in the upper and middle Olt river basin (Romania)

Erhard Schulz, József Benedek, Sorina Farcas, Reiner Kleind, Uwe Schleichert, Wilfried Schreiber, Thomas Tittizer: The pollution history of the mining region of NW-Romania, a multidisciplinary project

András Libus: The Mureş catchment area natural park

Enikő Veress: Implications of the interdependence of human and natural environment. Case-study of the riverine populations of the Mureş river


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