Freshwater is a vital and scarce resource on our planet with only 3% of the water on Earth being freshwater rivers and lakes, the rest being oceans. Freshwater rivers and lakes are formed when hollows are made in the Earth, such as when land collapses after a magma flow allowing for rainwater or melted snow to flow through and accumulate in the empty space. However, even though freshwater biomes are not expansive, they are still home to over 100,000 different species of plants and animals. Many amphibian species, such as turtles, frogs, and alligators, live in freshwater biomes. Mammals, such as otters and beavers, live in freshwater biomes too, with many more mammals stopping by a river or lake for a drink.
Freshwater animals adapt to their environment through gills that obtain oxygen and allow them to live in rivers and streams in which the water is cooler and has a higher oxygen level. Freshwater animals also need to swim fast to catch food and utilize their environment to create their home.
Freshwater animals are going extinct due to the creation of man-made elements that block migration routes for fish and disrupt habitats. The water withdrawal for human use also shrinks and degrades habitats as well as the draining of wetlands for development depletes habitats. Other reasons include overexploitation, pollution, and global warming.
We can protect freshwater fish by establishing multiple solutions. These solutions include restricting the construction of dams and establishing protected wetlands. Other solutions to protect freshwater fish are regulating water withdrawal for human use and incentive for farming businesses to reduce the use of pesticides.