Project collaborations


Estimating effective population size in populations of marine fish: an approach using interannual fluctuations of the genetic composition
  • ​​​​​​Lead Scientist: Sara Francisco, MARE – Marine and Environmental Sciences Centre, ISPA Instituto Universitário, Portugal
  • Co-Scientist: Halvor Knutsen, Department of Population Genetics, Institute of Marine Research , Norway

POPSIZE focuses on the comparison of the actual sizes and populations genetics of four species of coastal fish along European coast: two commercially exploited species (the sea breams Diplodus sargus and D. vulgaris, Sparidae) will be compared with two species that are not subject to fishing pressure (the sand-smelt Atherina presbyter, Atherinidae, and the shanny Lipophrys pholis, Blenniidae).

Main objectives

  1. ​To develop an innovative approach that combines historical and contemporary data on the actual size of the study populations.

  2. To compare the population structure obtained by two sets of temporally independent samples.

  3. To contrast the current state with the one of at least one generation behind, under the assumption that the species commercially exploited must show a decrease in their effective size in the case of fishing.

POPSIZE​ gains additional relevance in a context where climate change and anthropogenic influences on ecosystems are quite concerning, providing great importance to the genetic biodiversity monitoring and to the prediction of changes in allele frequencies and in Ne, either for contexts of conservation or fisheries management.​

All project particpants
Sara Francisco, MARE – Marine and Environmental Sciences Centre, ISPA Instituto Universitário, Portugal

Halvor Knutsen, Institute of Marine Research , Norway

Per-Erik Jorde, University of Oslo, Norway

Joana Robalo, MARE-ISPA, Portugal

Ana Pereira, MARE-ISPA, Portugal


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