La Serenissima’s hundreds of canals have been emptied of speeding motorboat taxis, transport and tourist boats. The chugging vaporetti water buses now run on a reduced timetable. Even most of the gondolas are moored.
The clarity of the water has improved dramatically. Cormorants have returned to dive for fish they can now see.
…The reason is the absence of motorised transport, which normally churns up the muddy canal floor.
….In a queue to buy fish at his local fishmonger in Canareggio, Franco Fabris, an architect, reminisced: “When I was a kid growing up, there were far less boats in the canals and lots of kids would jump in and go swimming.”
“For the moment I am not going out fishing as all the restaurants I supply have closed, so what is the point?” said Franco Folin, a fisherman. “But when this all over, we may well see more fish returning because for the moment pleasure fishing is prohibited – there will be an awful lot of extra marine life in the lagoon.”