Our aim to see how pollution populations on an evolutionary level, over generations. In the project we focus on the Baltic sea as it is a large, heavily populated, industrialized, farmed water body with a long water residence time with a complex mix of contaminants.

Contamination such as pollution is strongly associated with reductions in the species richness and evenness of marine habitats and the Baltic Sea is considered to be one of the most polluted seas in the world. The Baltic Sea is also a marginal ecosystem species origin from both marine or fresh water environments and constitutes important genetic resources that are vulnerable to environmental change. Therefore, the ecology of the Baltic Sea may be unusually sensitive to environmental perturbations.

This project will use a combination of experiments, field investigations of genetic variation, and controlled laboratory studies of two common Baltic Sea organisms, a fish the three-spined stickleback and a mollusc the Blue mussel. The knowledge obtained from this project will be important for increasing the scope of ecological risk assessment (ERA) to also include effects of evolutionary responses. The comparative studies proposed here will therefore highlight the differences in response found in individuals, populations and communities in questions. We hence provide knowledge about the impact of genetic biodiversity and environmental adaptation on ERA with special emphasis on the Baltic Sea.

Södertörns högskola, Institutionen för livsvetenskaper

Josefine Larsson, forskare, josefine.larsson@sh.se

University of Gdansk, Institute of Oceanography, Department of Marine Ecosystem Functioning, Poland

Katarzyna Smolarz, PhD, oceksm@univ.gda.pl
Magdalena Dublinowska, magdadub@wp.pl
Natalia Czerniwska, natalia_czerniawska@op.pl