Fish Monitoring in the Wadden Sea

A number of long-term (> 10 years) fish monitoring programmes are being conducted in the Wadden Sea. These include stow net and fyke programmes, as well as well as trawls.

The trilateral Expert Group Swimway (EG-Swimway) has proposed a common fish monitoring programme in the trilateral World Heritage Area Wadden Sea under the umbrella of the Trilateral Monitoring and Assessment Programme (TMAP).

Eight well-established and proven monitoring programmes of the three countries were selected as candidates for TMAP fish monitoring.


Candidate monitoring programmes selected for Trilateral Monitoring and Assessment Programme (TMAP) fish monitoring. Data from Alfred Wegener Institute for Polar and Marine Research are protected by a temporary moratorium and therefore comparability discussions are pending. A Lower Saxon stow net fishery 2005 – 2017 is not an ongoing monitoring programme, but the data set is valuable as a baseline (Source: EG-Swimway, 2022).
Country Fish monitoring programme Gear Period


  Demersal Young Fish Survey 

 Beam trawl





  Fish monitoring of the     Schleswig- Holstein Wadden Sea

 Stownet until 2019; since 2020 pelagic trawl




   Long-term time series of the AWI between Sylt and the Danish island of Rømø

 Trawl (demersal and  pelagic)




   Stownet fisheries




  NIOZ Fyke




    Diadromous fish monitoring in the Wadden Sea (Komwerderzand)




    Stownet fishery in the Wadden Sea estuaries




Danish rivers

    Mark and recapture (MR)


Map of fish monitoring stations
Map of fish monitoring stations of candidate programmes along the Wadden Sea coast, as selected by the trilateral Swimway group (Source: EG-Swimway, 2022).