From Natural to Degraded Rivers and Back Again: A Test of Restoration Ecology Theory and Practice

Feld, C.K. et al.

Publication Date:

Three Danish restoration schemes are provided as focal case studies to supplement the literature review and largely supported our findings. While the large-scale re-meandering and re-establishment of water levels at River Skjern resulted in significant recovery of riverine biota, habitat enhancement schemes at smaller-scales in other rivers were largely ineffective and failed to show long-term recovery. The general lack of knowledge derived from integrated, well-designed and long-term restoration schemes is striking, and we present a conceptual framework to help address this problem. The framework was applied to the three restoration types included in our study and highlights recurrent cause-effect chains, that is, commonly observed relationships of restoration measures (cause) and their effects on abiotic and biotic conditions (effect). Such conceptual models can provide useful new tools for devising more effective river restoration, and for identifying avenues for future research in restoration ecology in general.

Resource Type:
Peer-reviewed Article

Advances in Ecological Research