Nebenrinne Bislich-Vahnum - Restoration of a side channel of the river Rhine near Wesel, Lower German Rhine

LIFE08 NAT/D/000007

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Contact details:

Contact person: Thomas Chrobock
Tel: +49 2826 91876 02
Email: info@NABU-Naturschutzstation.de

Project description:


The "Unterer Niederrhein" is a wetland and pasture area containing, amongst others, a variety of river and alluvial habitats. The area holds RAMSAR and SPA designations, which helps to protect its floodplain complex, where priority bird species breed and winter. Alterations to the river’s natural conditions are considered to have contributed to a lack of spawing grounds and breeding habitats for several fish species, such as the houting, Coregonus oxyrhynchus). Breeding and resting habitats for several rheophilic and migratory fish species listed in the Habitats Directive (Alosa alosa, Cottus gobio, Aspius aspius, Romanogobio belingii and Barbus barbus) have also declined and conservation measures are required to help restore the river ecosystem in support of its bird and fish species.


The main project objectives focus on improving the following NATURA 2000 sites ‘NSG Rheinaue Bislich-Vahnum, nur Teilfläche’ and ‘Rheinfischschutzzonen zwischen Emmerich und Bad Honnef’. These improvements will strengthen key elements of the SPA Natura 2000 network site and Ramsar site ‘Unterer Niederrhein’ by re-establishing near natural and dynamic river flow systems, as well as associated floodplain structures. A 2.5 km long secondary channel will be widened, deepened and re-opened to the river Rhine. Further habitat works will target restoration of natural river depths, bank structures, currents, sediments and sediment dynamics. Measures will be introduced to mitigate against habitat damage from waves caused by passing ships and efforts will be invested to safeguard appropriate hydrological functions such as groundwater tables, flooding parameters and currents. Natural features will be extended to improve habitats for breeding or resident waders and other birds including arctic geese, swans and meadow species.



Environmental issues addressed:


Habitats - Freshwater


protected area‚  river‚  wetland

Target species

 Alosa alosa   Cobitis taenia   Coregonus oxyrhynchus   Cottus gobio   Cygnus cygnus   

Target Habitat types

  • 3260 - Water courses of plain to montane levels with the Ranunculion fluitantis and Callitricho-Batrachion vegetation
  • 3270 - Rivers with muddy banks with Chenopodion rubri p.p. and Bidention p.p. vegetation

Natura 2000 sites

SCI DE4304302 NSG Rheinaue Bislich-Vahnum, nur Teilfläche



Coordinator NABU-Naturschutzstation e.V.
Type of organisation NGO-Foundation
Description The NABU-Naturschutzstation Kranenburg e.V. is an NGO dealing with nature conservation and related public relations activities.
Partners Biologische Station im Kreis Wesel e.V., Germany Planungsbüro Koenzen, Germany Zoologisches Institut der Universität zu Köln-Außenstelle Rees – Grietherbusch, Germany Ministerium für Umwelt und Naturschutz, Landwirtschaft und Verbraucherschutz des Landes Nordrhein-Westfalen, Germany


Project reference LIFE08 NAT/D/000007
Duration 01-JAN-2010 to 31-DEC -2018
Total budget 2,640,301.00 €
EU contribution 1,320,150.00 €
Project location Nordrhein-Westfalen(Deutschland)


Read more:

Project web site Project's website


Project description   Environmental issues   Beneficiaries   Administrative data   Read more   Print   PDF version