Become a marine scientist for one day...

A few introductory words If you are a qualified diver you now have the chance of participating in a European scientific project with a minimum effort. Some diving experience is needed (at least PADI Open Water or equivalent) to guarantee for safety. The scope of the project is to introduce citizens to scientific working and to provide them with new insights about marine biodiversity. In return, citizens will collect high-quality biological data and after the project will be able to identify the most common eastern Mediterranean fishes! The associated diving centers can provide you with further informations for the whole course.

Please contact one of the particpating diving or yachting clubs if you are interested in participation. For mor info about the project, send an e-mail to .

Before the dive A divemaster or instructor specially trained for the COMBER project will introduce you to fish identification. In a short presentation divers will learn about the Mediterranean fish diversity and how to recognize the different species by using the fish identification card provided by BIOWATCH. The presentation will include an introduction to the different types of habitats, the main characteristics of the target species and instructions how to record the observations.

During the dive An experienced diving instructor will accompany you during the dive to guide you and to assure highest safety. Additionally, a scientific diver will supervise you under the water. During the first ten minutes of the dive, the scientist will help you to recognise the fish and to record your first observations. After this introductory phase you will identify the different species on your own but of course you can always ask for help if you are in doubt about an identification.
Priority is the personal safety of each diver, so you have to obey all the diving rules and restrictions. In all cases safety goes before observations!


After the dive The divers will be introduced to the COMBER database available over the internet. They will create an account on this web page by providing some personal details. You do not have to provide your real name or any other identification data if you prefer to remain anonymous, but for statistical reasons we ask for some information about your diving experience. After creating an account, the divers will be asked to log the dive (e.g. date, time, diving point, etc.). The most important part follows now: to enter the species records into the database (which species and how many). If there are any questions the supervisor will assist you. All the results and experiences will be discussed at the de-briefing section. At last a small questionnaire will be handed out to everybody in order to evaluate the project and to provide us with suggestions for improvement.

Of course we'd love it if you continued to record data during future dives! We will acknowledge your personal contributions in any scientific publications that might result from this project - your first step into the scientific world!

In short:


When: Summer Season 2012, on demand.

Costs: Please contact the local organizers

Requirements: If you want to dive you will need a dive certificate (CMAS*, PADI Open Water, or equivalent). Snorklers just need to be able to swim.

How to participate: Contact  one of the particpating diving or yachting clubs.