The shallow bottoms of the northern Gulf of Bothnia are important areas for the whole marine environment. Their biodiversity and productivity ensure healthy fish stocks, provide clear waters for swimming and mitigate climate change effects. At the same time the species and habitats of the shallow bottoms are under increasing threat from human activities. A challenge for us today is the lack of knowledge of occurring species and habitats and practical solutions on how to monitor them and take action if needed.
The SeaMoreEco project will join expertise of marine biological and geological management in Finland and Sweden with the overall objective to test, develop and demonstrate methods for efficient monitoring, conservation and restoration of biodiversity on shallow bottoms. The focus is on threatened species and habitats and invasive alien species. The project will explore ways to efficiently monitor the shallow bottoms by flying and floating drones, satellites and shipborne surveys. The aim is then to use these monitoring techniques and test how it is possible to monitor populations of threatened underwater vegetation as well as invasive species.
Some species and habitats are in acute need of restoration or they face a risk of severe decline. The project will test and evaluate methods for how to restore different types of habitats and species on the shallow bottoms.
If we can ensure the biodiversity of the shallow bottoms, we are one step closer to having a living sea in the Northern Gulf of Bothnia for many generations to come.