Tereza Maxerová from the Gymnázium Jírovcova high school won the Czech national round of high school project competition in the category of Environmental protection and engineering with her study on the effects of the revitalization of small ponds in an abandoned military area on aquatic beetle community.

For more than 4 years, she monitored aquatic beetle communities in an abandoned military area close to the Vrbenské rybníky reserve near Ceske Budejovice. The goal of her study, supervised by Vojtěch Kolář from our department and the Institute of Entomology of the Biology centre CAS, was to assess how pond revitalization affects the communities in the long run. Species diversity recoved after an initial decrease in the first year and ultimately surpassed the initial state before revitalization. However, some species completely disappeared. These results show that creating a mosaic of pools at different successional stages can maintain high local water beetle diversity, which can guide future habitat management both at the studied site and elsewhere.

Congratulations Tereza on your extraordinary achievement and we wish you all the best in your future studies!

Her winning talk (in Czech) can be seen online at https://youtu.be/0rdsgAi8Bb8