The UK’s river Thames was declared biologically dead back in 1957, but recent reports conducted by the Zoological Society of London (ZSL) highlighted the positive changes that happened since.
According to the new study, the river has been revived with hundreds of wildlife species calling the London river home. This is around 60 years after the sad announcement was made about the body of water.
The first major report into the state of the Thames in 60 years estimated that 115 species of fish can be found in the river. Now, it is housing seahorses, eels, seals and even shark species such as tope, starry smooth hound and spur dog sharks.
Even an increase in birds and other species has been noted since the 1990s. A massive contributor to this could be the improvement of water quality, as dissolved oxygen concentration shows an increase from 2007 to last year.
Unfortunately, climate change and sewage still remain the two biggest threats to the river. The former has increased the river’s temperature by 2 degrees annually and led to higher water levels which could impact wildlife.
Sewage discarded into the the river also raises concerns, as unfortunately nitrates from sewage are getting worse. This can cause algal blooms which are rapidly growing amounts of algae. This reduces oxygen in the water, possibly suffocating marine animals.