EVOLUTION IN THE GUADIANA RIVER

2004 – The Confederacy is aware of the Eichhornia crassipes plant, although some fishermen claim that it had been on the river since 2003.

2005 – The Guadiana Hydrographic Confederation began to take action to control the spread of this invasive species

2006 – There was a serious situation of massive proliferation of the plant, invading large areas of the Guadiana River (from Medellin to Merida), colonizing some 70 km of river from bank to bank. Thanks to the physical barrier of the Montijo dam, downstream of the city of Merida and the important media mobilization launched by the Guadiana Hydrographic Confederation, its expansion was able to be stopped.

2007 and 2008 – Pest monitoring and control was carried out thanks to funds provided by the Ministry.

2009 and 2010 – Continued work to combat the camalote with new investments. This period constitutes an age of control of the invasive species.

2011 – Investment was reduced and with it the means of surveillance and control, so with the arrival of the high temperatures of the summer season, there was another episode of mass proliferation and the plague was again out of control, expanding from Medellin to Merida.

2012 – It was necessary to make new and urgent investments for the rapid intervention of mechanical means in the face of the situation that was generating.

In the international section (Stretch B6) in Portugal EDIA installs the first floating barrier to contain The Camalote and began surveillance work in the area.

2013 – GHC acquired specialized machinery for the extraction of the pest from the river environment. The significant rains that occurred this year and the consequent overflows of the Guadiana River, involved the elimination of the plant from the watercourse, however, the plant exceeds the Montijo dam invading the B-section. The return to a plague control situation that remained during 2014 and early 2015.

In mid-2015 – A new explosion of the pest occurred, which prompted the increase of the means to fight this species in the Guadiana River. 

2016 and 2017 – The performances have focused on trying to reduce episodes of mass proliferation and slow the dispersal of this species to unaffected stretches of the Guadiana River to return to a controlled situation.

The Guadiana Hydrographic Confederation and the General Direction of Environment of the Junta de Extremadura (Spanish side), APA and EDIA Portuguese side partner are partnered to carry out the ACECA project “Actions of control and elimination of the camalote in the stretch Guadiana River” co-financed with European Funds.

2018 – 2019 – A crash plan is launched to combat the camalote, in which MEU (Military Emergency Unit) troops have collaborated. The purpose of this Shock Plan, of which the ACECA project is part, is to protect Portugal and bring means to the headland area to free up kilometers of affected shore in section A.