Christmas spruce trees ready for upcycling, Source: Depositphotos

Swedish Xmas trees go into lakes to become fish nests

Swedish Xmas trees go into lakes to become fish nests

Here’s a good example of the concept of upcycling, if there ever was one

Sportfiskarna is a Swedish sports fishermen’s association, which has come up with a unique and novel idea to reuse Christmas trees once the holidays are over. In their case, they’ve found that the spruce plants can make ideal habitats for fish giving them a place to lay their eggs.

Every year, Sportfiskarna together with Stroma tour operator, Stockholm City, WWF, and Skansen och Stockholms hamnar collect old Christmas trees and lower them in the waters in and around Stockholm. This creates new habitats for fish and fry since exploitation is threatening current habitats. The fir trees are bundled together and lowered into the water. The branches of the trees then become aquatic spaces where fish can play and reproduce with freedom and safety.

Reflects the change in natural habitats

Christmas trees are collected in January every year. They are bundled together and a heavy stone is attached so they can sink and remain at the bottom without floating up. Then they are lowered into the water and new habitats can be formed at the bottom where fish get to use them as their new home.

The waters in Stockholm city and archipelago are today heavily affected by exploitation such as dredgings, boat traffic, quays and marinas. This affects the reproduction of fry because former untouched habitat areas are slowly vanishing. If this continues in the same pace as today - in 50 years from now, all untouched areas can be gone.

The fish’s natural habitat has been eradicated and there is currently not enough vegetation and structures in Stockholm’s polluted water, which is something the fish need. But by adding the spruce to the seabed we can make a kind of artificial reef that forms structures for the fish,” explained John Kärki, project leader at Sportfiskarna speaking for the Stromma blog.



Growing City


Smart City


Green City


Social City


New European Bauhaus




ECP 2021 Winner TheMayorEU