Conservation program of Danube Salmon, Hucho hucho (L. 1758) in Serbia – propagation and rearing experiences
Project “Artificial propagation of Danube Salmon in the aim of strengthening natural population in Drina River” was started in March 2011. Propagation and rearing is conducted on the fish farm “Perućac” in Perućac. Breeders of Danube salmon were gathered on river Drina during August 2010, after massive mortality situation caused by cleaning of turbines from hydropower plant “Perućac”. Fish caught then were transferred to a nearby river Vrelo. In beginning of April breeders were caught in river Vrelo, marked, and transported to the fish farm. Fingerlings from artificial propagation conducted in April 2011. was fed with combination of Artemia salina/commercial trout food, and with combination of Gammarus sp./fish meat. Group fed with Gammarus sp./fish meat had statistically higher values of average mass and length. Smaller part of reared fish is released into Drina River during October 2011. Their size was between 10 and 12 centimeters. There is a plan to rearrange part of Vrelo river, and adjust it as rearing stream for Danube Salmon. Long term plans include application of conservation measures like continuous monitoring, revitalization of breeding streams, education of locals and fishermen.