The Thames, London’s famous River, has just been the subject of a major study, which has not been done for almost seventy years. Indeed, after the last investigation all these years ago, the Thames was deemed biologically dead. However, a recent study reveals that this is no longer the case. The Thames is teeming with life, including sharks, seals, and seahorses.
If you have ever seen a picture of London, you’ve probably seen the Thames. The river is 346 kilometers long and flows through London before emptying into the North Sea. It has long been deemed biologically dead, but a new study reveals the contrary. In a paper titled “The State of the Thames in 2021”, the Zoological Society of London (ZSL) reveals that a plethora of animal species currently call the river home.
According to the report, there are 115 different types of fish, 3,200 gray seals, and 900 harbor seals, as well as seahorses and eels in the water. In addition, when the Thames is at high tide, sharks come into the estuary to breed. Some of the species that have been identified are members of the genus Squalus.
As a result, the Zoological Society of London’s assessment confirms that life has returned to the Thames in a noticeable manner.
Unfortunately, the massive volumes of rubbish that gather along the banks of the famed London River might once again jeopardize the river’s ability to re-establish life. Indeed, there has been a rise in the amount of nitrate discharged by industry in the river, as well as an increase in the amount of wastewater. However, these pollutants, whose concentrations may be quite high in certain areas, inevitably degrade the quality of the water and pose a threat to species living in it as a result.
Several hundred bottles and cleaning wipes have indeed been found in the river between the town of Teddington in southwest London and the port of Shoeburyness on the North Sea. Cleaning wipes are also a major problem in the town of Barnes, which is located on the outskirts of the city of London. Since 2014, this rubbish has grown to encompass an area of 1,000 m2, and the level of the waste has climbed by one meter.
Estuaries, according to Alison Debney, a conservationist working to rehabilitate wetlands areas, are one of the most neglected and vulnerable ecosystems on the planet. Rivers, on the other hand, are crucial to safeguard since, in addition to providing habitat for ecosystems, they also offer clean water and protect the banks from floods.
Researchers are now pushing for a second inventory to be conducted within five to 10 years to see whether any other alterations have occurred.