The IUCN Center for Mediterranean Cooperation (IUCN Med) in cooperation with Enalia Physis Environmental Research Centre (ENALIA, Cyprus) organized a first workshop addressing marine invasive species management in Mediterranean Marine Protected Areas (MPAs). This meeting took place in Cyprus close to the Cape Greco MPA between the 24th and 26th of April 2018.


Lagocephalus sceleratus signe MD

The invasive pufferfish Lagocephalus sceleratus (Picture: Murat Draman)


The aim of this workshop was to enhance the understanding of the impacts of non-native marine invasive species and build the capacity to elaborate efficient management actions and proper mitigation measures in MPAs. Thirty participants came from 16 countries (Croatia, Albania, Egypt, Israel, Montenegro, Cyprus, Greece, Libya, Italy, Turkey, France, Spain, Tunisia, Lebanon, Iran and the USA). France and ECOMERS laboratory were represented by Virginie Raybaud. She presented an overview of 3 ongoing projects from the lab on this topic:

- PAVIS project led by Sylvaine Giakoumi (,

- ECOCIMED, a citizen science project led by Patrice Francour (,

- CLIMAT-BIO project led by Virginie Raybaud (

Read more: IUCN Workshop addressing marine invasive species management in Mediterranean Marine Protected...



    Organisée dans différents lieux emblématiques de la Principauté, la Monaco Ocean Week (MOW) est l’occasion pour les acteurs locaux et les grandes organisations internationales de partager leurs expériences et d’approfondir leur réflexion sur la conservation du milieu marin et le développement durable d’une économie bleue. Pour plus d’information, le programme détaillé de la MOW peut être consulté sur le site officiel  


Dans le cadre de la MOW, le laboratoire ECOMERS (Université Côte d'Azur ; et la Plateforme LIFE (Low Impact Fishers of Europe) co-organisent un événement sur « La pêche artisanale en Méditerranée : contribuer à des solutions et non à des problèmes ».

L’événement, ouvert au public, se déroulera mercredi 11 avril 2018 au Yacht Club de Monaco (, de 13:00 à 16:00.

The ANR project PAVIS and the EU COST project MarCons organized an expert knowledge elicitation workshop at the University of Vienna, Austria (27-28/03/2018). The aim of the workshop was to bring together experts on marine biological invasions and marine conservation in order to identify the most effective management actions for the control of marine invasive species. The workshop was facilitated by Dr. Sylvaine Giakoumi from ECOMERS, CNRS, University of Nice Sophia-Antipolis (France) who organized the workshop together with Dr. Paolo G. Albano from the University of Vienna (Austria) and Dr. Vesna Macic from the Institute of Marine Biology, Kotor (Montenegro). The participants came from eight Mediterranean countries and the European Commission (the Joint Research Centre). France was represented by Prof. Patrice Francour from ECOMERS.

Marcons Vienna 2018 03 27

In the picture from left to right: Vesna Macic (organizer), Carlos Jimenez (Cyprus), Patrice Francour (France), Anna Occhipinti (Italy), Ana Cristina Cardoso (JRC), Stelios Katsanevakis (Greece), Sylvaine Giakoumi (organizer-facilitator), Paolo G. Albano (organizer), Yassine Ramzi Sghaier (Tunisia), Gil Rilov (Israel), Alan Deidun (Malta), Dor Edelist (Israel), Ernesto Azzurro (Italy), Emma Cebrian (Spain).

Read more: PAVIS and MarCons meeting in Vienna University

Dr Sylvaine Giakoumi (ECOMERS, CNRS, Universtity of Nice Sophia-Antipolis, France), Dr Silvia Carvalho (Research Centre in Biodiversity and Genetic Resources, Portugal), and Dr Virgilio Hermoso (Centre Tecnológic Forestal de Catalunya, Spain) will teach an introductory Marxan course with emphasis on connectivity within the framework of the EU COST project MarCons ( The 3-day training course will take place at the University of the Aegean in beautiful Lesvos Island, Greece between the 7th and 9th May 2018.

Marxan mytillini 2018 02

This three-day training school aims to teach participants how to apply the principles of systematic conservation planning using software Marxan. Marxan is the most widely used decision support tool for conservation planning globally. Developed by Ian Ball and Hugh Possingham from the University of Queensland, Australia, Marxan supports spatial prioritization by producing transparent and repeatable results. It is commonly used for the design of networks of protected areas in the marine, terrestrial, and freshwater environments.

If you are interested in the training course please learn more at

Read more: Marxan: an introductory course

Landscape ecology is a multidisciplinary field that combines the spatial approach of geography with functional ecology. Concerning marine environment, a submerged landscape, called seascape, is defined as a spatially heterogeneous area of coastal environment. Measurement of spatial patterns plays a central role in monitoring environmental change and for studying the multi-scale processes that drive organism distributions and biodiversity.

In 2011, ECOMERS co-organized with the French Agency for the Marine Protected Areas an international workshop on the seascape. The contributions have been published in a Springer volume (Underwater seascapes - From geographical to ecological Perspectives. 2014. Musard O., Le Dû-Blayo L., Francour P., Beurier J.P., Feunteun E., Talassinos L. (eds). Springer Science & Business Media). In collaboration with CREOCEAN company, ECOMERS published in this book a method to assess the seascape integrity (Thorin S., Bodilis P., Schvartz T., Durtieux E., Francour P. 2014. Seascape integrity assessment: a proposed index for the Mediterranean coast: 263-275). The aim of this paper was to propose a relevant seascape index focussing on Mediterranean littoral areas, moreover rocky habitat that constitutes one of the most important and characteristic habitats of the north-western Mediterranean coastal areas. The methodology proposed to score marine sites addresses three factors: biological, geomorphologic (i.e. 3D complexity) and anthropogenic. The goal was to build a functional and relevant tool that could eventually be used for a large scale geographical analysis of submarine landscapes along the north-western Mediterranean coast. The proposed index can qualitatively assess the value of the seascape within a site. Statistical tests showed that the proposed index is an accurate and relevant proxy of the seascape complexity value. The seascape integrity index we developed can then be a new tool that could complement other existing biological indices.Paysage

Recently, in collaboration with NaturDive, an association of non professional Scuba divers interested in marine ecology, Patrice Francour (ECOMERS) proposed a training, including lecture and scuba diving, to involve non professional divers in seascape monitoring along the Riviera coast. The aim of this citizen science initiative is (1) to gather data on seascape integrity of most of the diving spots along the coast, (2) to provide some managers (marine protected areas, Natura 2000 areas, etc.) with quantitative data, scientifically validated, and (3) to improve Scuba divers awareness on the ecological importance of seascape.

This seascape initiative is included in the ECOCIMED, a program of citizen science, managed by ECOMERS and AMPN (Association Monégasque pour la Protection de la Nature; manager of the MPAs in Monaco). Contributions to ECOCIMED are available of the ECOCIMED Facebook page.

Read more: Seascape and citizen science: an ECOCIMED contribution