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Seville battles water plant invasion in one of its parks

Seville battles water plant invasion in one of its parks

The pond in Parque de los Principes has been repeatedly taken over by an extensive canopy

Located just west of the city centre, in the Los Remedios neighbourhood, the pond in Parque de los Principes, has been invaded by the floating bur-reed (Sparganium angustifolium), a specie foreign to the local ecosystem. City authorities partnering with specialists from the University of Seville are currently working to find ways to unroot the problem.

There are various speculations about the origins of the infestation

Belonging to the cattail family, the plant that is currently forming intertwined green layers at lake surface is not native to these parts. Its appearance, the authorities affirm, was not caused by poor maintenance of the water body.

We are waiting for the scientists to finish taking samples so we can do a deeper cleaning without emptying the pond, in order to avoid causing repeated stress to the fishes and ducks there,” said David Guevara, the Councillor of Ecological Transition. The lake had already been emptied for maintenance back in February.

Cleaning the pond from the aquatic plants will be a collaborative task. Source: Ayuntamiento de Sevilla

Although the first signs of the plant appeared a year ago, it was in June this year that the problem can be said to have gone out of control. The plants have branching stems that can reach up to 3 metres in length. They interlock, eventually forming a large floating canopy just below the water surface.

It is not too clear how the aquatic weeds got into the pond in the first place. Scientists speculate that it could have happened after people have emptied their aquariums into the pond or they could have been brought over by birds or even by an explosion in the fish population.

Authorities advise visitors to the park to avoid feeding the ducks, and even the pigeons in the area, as the feathery fauna can also contribute to aggravating the situation. Councillor Guevara affirmed that the public will be kept informed about the developments.



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