Research and conservation of dolphins & Mediterranean monk seals
Since 1991, the Ionian Dolphin Project aims to ensure the long-term viability of marine mammals living in coastal waters of the eastern Ionian Sea.
Dolphins and Mediterranean monk seals inhabiting the coastal waters of Greece are facing significant threats. Some of them must deal with increasing human encroachment, while others have disappeared altogether from portions of their former range.
Tethys Research Institute is providing support to conservation efforts, through actions including:
- continued monitoring of marine mammals through field research methods including boat surveys and individual photoidentification, to detect population trends and identify critical habitat;
- monitoring threats to local marine ecosystems (e.g., pollution, overfishing);
- public awareness, education and capacity building initiatives (e.g., training fellow scientist in cetacean research techniques, presentations to the local communities, lectures at schools, production of education materials);
- establishing synergies with stakeholders (e.g., authorities, fishers’ cooperatives), aimed to raise awareness on the need of developing measures to protect marine mammals and implement existing regulations (e.g., to prevent illegal fishing);
- dissemination of information in the scientific literature and delivery of management proposals to international agreements and bodies concerned with the protection of marine biodiversity