“We may be reaching a high we last reached 10 years ago,” says forester Jeroen Dean Hartog. He is responsible for the IJsselvallei region. “According to the latest reports, the water level in Lobeth was 12.7 meters, which is already a bit higher. It is expected to rise above 14 meters.”
The river and the surrounding nature really need high water.
As Den Hartog tells his story, he is almost on his knees in the water. “I am now on a cycle path near Wijhe. This is one of the paths that floods when the water level in IJssel rises dramatically. Yet it is even more extreme this year. We are now approaching the water level we last reached ten years ago.”
Forster Dean Hartog explains the consequences for humans and animals. (The text continues below the video)
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Animals on land
Groups of highland cows and Shetland horses move through the high waters to other places in the area, where they are still dry. “This area is getting smaller and smaller,” says Den Hartog. “Like here in Duursche Waarden. The animals are now in groups in an area where there are usually many pedestrians.”
Usually, because the walking area around the former brick factory is now closed. “It’s a shame, but we had to make this decision to make it as good as possible for the animals. Lots of people and animals would be squeezing a little space.”
The text continues below the image.
Advantages of high tide
However, the higher water level also has advantages. “The river and the nature around it really need a high water. Because the water overflows regularly on the banks of the river, sand, mud and seeds are brought from all kinds of plants.”
These seeds give the river a special blend of plants. “The special plants and animals that appear here all have to do with the fact that the river regularly floods its banks.”
According to Rijkswaterstaat, they are prepared to take measures should the water level rise, such as warning people who work or live in flood plains. Dean Hartog: “There are many people in the region who may no longer be able to reach their homes when the water is too high.”
“At the moment this is not on the agenda, but it could be this week. It depends on the temperature in Germany and Switzerland, and how much melt water is coming from there that way.”
Due to the high water level, Wijhese Veer will be decommissioned from 06:30 tomorrow. Olster Veer will remain in service.
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