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The primary aim of this project is to understand the structure and function of biological communities on the deep (200-2000m) European ocean margin. These communities are being increasingly subjected to human impacts (fisheries, oil and gas production, po llution from terrigenous sources). There is an urgent need to study the tropic relationships between benthic and benthopelagic organisms in order to guide policy for the sustainable use of ocean margin ecosystems. Trophic relationships provide essential in formation on biological interactions for management strategies. Hence, the main objectives are to study population structure and production of benthic/benthopelagic communities and their trophic interactions in order to evaluate 1) what food sources are ex ploited by deep-sea demersal fish and crustacean species of commercial value and 2) how ecosystems might change in response to human impacts. The specific objectives are: (i) to study the dynamics (abundance, biomass, diversity) of suprabenthos (near botto m) zooplankton communities, (ii) to estimate their secondary production, (iii) to determine food web structure and (iv) to produce the FIRST predictive models of secondary production and P/B for bathyal ecosystems. Through models the project aims to unders tand the likely consequences of any changes in the dynamics of bathyal ecosystems. These objectives will be achieved within larger national and EU-funded multidisciplinary projects comparing ecosystems in different biogeochemical settings in the Northeast Atlantic and the Mediterranean Sea. The work proposed complements the aims of these larger programmes and will gain added value from them. Training will be gained in bathyal ecosystems, biochemical analyses and modeling, through multidisciplinary workshops and short courses planned in EU FP6 Networks. The Fellow will participate in multidisciplinary cruises and will gain first hand experience of a wide variety of deep-sea sampling methods.

Call for proposal

See other projects for this call

Funding Scheme

EIF - Marie Curie actions-Intra-European Fellowships


Polaris House, North Star Avenue
United Kingdom