About the project
The distribution of noble crayfish (Astacus astacus) is rapidly declining in both Sweden and Norway and the species is now highly endangered throughout Europe. In the county of Värmland (Sweden) 50 percentage of the local populations has gone extinct during the last two decades and in Norway 30 percentage of populations were lost or failed to reproduce during the last 40 years.
One of the greatest threats to noble crayfish is illegal restocking of the North American signal crayfish (Pacifastacus leniusculus), considered as an invasive and alien speciesin Europe. The signal crayfish is a vector for the highly contagious crayfish disease. Whereas signal crayfish has evolutionary adaptations to cope with crayfish disease, all European crayfish lack this adaptation, making the disease highly lethal to them.
This project (SNIEF) is an Interreg Sweden-Norway project and aims to improve conditions for noble crayfish in waters in both Norway and Sweden. The project is between May 2019 and May 2022. As the The signal crayfish has increased in Swedish and Norwegian waters, the noble crayfish is now acutely threatened. Measures are needed to safeguard the aquatic environment. In this project, actors in Sweden and Norway are working together to protect and develop the population in various ways. Among other things, methods are being tested and further developed to both localize and combat signal crayfish and crayfish disease in cross-border areas.
The organisations behind the project
Värmland County Administrative Board together with the County Governor of Oslo og Viken are the project owners of this Interreg Sweden-Norway project. The Co-financiers and partners are the: European Regional Development Fund, Swedish Agency for Marine and Water Management, Norweigian Environment Agency, County Governor of Innlandet, Aurskog-Høland Municipality, Utmarksforvaltningen and Vannområdet grensevassdragene.