The SILMAR Project, organised by Fundaciomar, Spain, is an ambitious ongoing project to collate key species data around the coast of the Iberian peninsular at 80 transects with the help of volunteer divers. Based in Begur, the project launched in 2009 with a pilot study in the Girona area of the Costa Brava.
The data collected provides an ongoing record of the status of marine species and how they are responding to impacts from tourism, fishing, construction, polution, and the pressures of climate change.
Gaynor Rosier, originally from the UK, has been carrying out marine research on Posidonia oceanica for the past seven years. She became the voluntary coordinator for the transect GIM0109 in Cala Montgo, L'Escala, on the Costa Brava, in 2009 and is the only English-speaking volunteer involved with the SILMAR Project.
Gaynor welcomes volunteer divers from around the world to come and join in this marine research. Marine biology students can gain valuable fieldwork experience by taking part in gathering underwater data sets. However, any qualified diver with an interest in marine conservation can come and take part. (Budding divers can also come and undertake their diver training - PADI Open Water course - prior to joining in the research).