Zingel zingel (Linnaeus, 1766)
Aspro zingel (Linnaeus, 1758): Kovatcheff, 1923: 29; Drensky, 1951: 187.
Conservation status: in Bulgaria: Endangered EN [A1a], BDA-IV; International: IUCN [VU A1ce+2ce], BeC-III, HD-II, V.
General distribution. Europe: in the basins of the rivers Danube (from Bavaria to the delta), the Dniester and the Prut.
Distribution and abundance in Bulgaria. In Bulgaria, the species was recorded in the Danube River and some of its tributaries: the rivers Iskar, Vit, Osam, Yantra [1, 2, 3, 4, 5]. In the past, it was very common in the Danube River from Vidin to Silistra . At present, it is found rarely only in the Danube .
Habitats. It inhabits only permanent large rivers.
Biology. It prefers fast-flowing waters, rich in oxygen. Spawning occurs from March to April at places with a strong current. Eggs are layed on gravel bottom. A nocturnal species. It feeds on benthic invertebrates, fish eggs and small fish [6, 7].
Similar species. The Danube streber (Zingel streber), from which it differs by the shorter caudal peduncle and the higher number of rays in the two dorsal fins: 13-15 hard rays in the first dorsal fin, and one hard ray and 18-20 soft rays in the second dorsal fin.
Negative factors. Water pollution; fluctuations in river discharge and silting, as a result of river regulation activities; poaching.
Conservation measures taken. The species was included in Annex IV of the Biological Diversity Act (2002).
Conservation measures needed. Development and implementation of an Action Plan for the protection of the species in Bulgaria; introduction of a ban on fishing of the species; protection of the Danube River against pollution.
References. 1. Kovatcheff, 1923; 2. Drensky, 1951; 3. Karapetkova, 1972; 4. Karapetkova, 1994; 5. Marinov, 1978; 6. Karapetkova, Zivkov, 1995; 7. Froese, Pauly, 2006.
Authors: Tihomir Stefanov, Teodora Trichkova