Forschungsgruppe - FishBase


The research group 'FishBase' is interested in developing scientific methods that may contribute to the improvement of fisheries management and nature conservation in Europe and elsewhere. We are also GEOMAR’s representative to the FishBase Consortium – a group of 10 museums and institutes around the world that provides scientific advice to some long-standing projects like FishBase, SeaLifeBase and AquaMaps. We collaborate with scientists from the disciplines of fisheries biology, ichthyology, nature conservation, and ecological niche and aquatic modelling. The working group is currently funded by the Cluster of Excellence 'Future Ocean' and the Federal Agency for Nature Conversation (BfN).


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  • Dr. Rainer Froese (Senior Scientist / Research Group Leader): fisheries biology, population dynamics and life history of fishes, biodiversity patterns, macro-ecology, bio-informatics
  • Dr. Silvia Opitz (Scientist): aquatic ecosystem modelling, fisheries management, effect of MPAs on aquatic ecosystems
  • Dr. Eva Papaioannou (Scientist): fisheries management
  • Dr. Marco Scotti (Scientist):Community ecology, ecosystem modelling, fisheries management, food webs, linking biodiversity to ecosystem functioning, loop analysis, network analysis, seagrass communities, socioeconomic models

Former Group Members

  • M. Sc. Cristina Garilao (Research Assistant): database and web programming, ecological niche modelling
  • Dr. Thurid Otto (Scientist 2013 - 2020)
  • Dr. Nazli Demirel (Postdoc 2014-2015): now research Associate at Istanbul University – Institute of Marine Sciences and Management
  • M. Sc. Manuel Dureuil (M. Sc. 2014): now PhD student at Dalhousie University, Halifax


  • AquaMaps ( uses information from data repositories like FishBase ( and SeaLifeBase (  and ecological niche modelling to produce standardized maps for the world’s marine and freshwater species. To date over 17,000 species maps have been produced.
  • Future Ocean Atlas ( is a project funded by the Cluster of Excellence ‘Future Ocean’ that provides a simple web mapping interface to various biological, physical, chemical and socio-economic information about our current and future ocean. It displays Future Ocean Cluster of Excellence project results in a simple visual form that can be easily understood by the general public. The Atlas answers questions such as “What will be the environmental changes anticipated in a given area, and what will be the corelated changes in species composition“.
  • Ökofischman is a 3-year project (2013-2015) funded by the German Federal Agency for Nature Conservation with three main goals: (1) provide expert contributions to the implementation of the Common Fisheries Policy, the Marine Strategy Framework Directive and other relevant nature conservation standards; (2) provide scientific assessments of eco-certified fisheries;  and (3) develop an ecosystem model for both the German North and Baltic Seas.