Narrow wrack is a close relative to Bladder wrack which is only found in the Baltic Sea.
Narrow wrack, Fucus radicans, is a close relative to Bladder wrack. This wrack has evolved in the Baltic Sea and is adapted to the environmental conditons there. It is a unique species for the Baltic Sea.
Photo: Lena Bergström

BAMBI - Baltic Sea Marine Biodiversity

Research project

Short description

The goal of BAMBI - Baltic Sea Marine Biodiversity – is to assess and improve capacities of marine species to deal with the current challenge of a rapidly changing Baltic Sea environment. To reach this goal we need to understand the potential of organisms to evolve new adaptations and how management should be framed to support this. The project has ended.

Principal investigators

Kerstin Johannesson, Professor in marine ecology at University of Gothenburg. Project coordinator.
Personal webpage

Veijo Jormalainen, Professor in Ecology and Evolution Biology at University of Turku
Personal webpage

Jonne Kotta, Senior Researcher at University of Tartu
Personal webpage

Linda Laikre, Professor in Population Genetics at Stockholm University
Personal webpage

Thorsten Reusch, Professor in Marine Ecology at Helmholtz Center for Ocean Reasarch Kiel
Personal webpage

Annica Sandström, Professor in Political Science at Luleå University of Technology
Personal webpage


Baltic Sea Genetics for Managers

The project Bonus Bambi compiled genetic data on key species in the Baltic Sea. This data is presented on the website BaltGene, together with advice for management and conservation of genetic biodiversity.



Mileca LJM, Jormalainen V, Rugiua L, Pereyra RT, Rothäusler E, Havenhand J & De Wit PR. Double-edged sword of desalination: Decreased growth and increased grazing endanger range-margin Fucus populations. Journal of Experimental Marine Biology and Ecology,  November 2021.


Rugiu L, De Wit P, Kostian I & Jormalainen V. Climate change driven hyposalinity as a selective agent in the littoral mesoherbivore Idotea balthica. Marine Environmental Research, November 2020.

Heckwolf MJ, Meyer BS, Häsler R, Höppner MP, Eizaguirre C & Reusch TBH. Two different epigenetic information channels in wild three-spined sticklebacks are involved in salinity adaptation. Science Advance, March 2020.

Rothäusler E, Rugiu L, Tiihonen T & Jormalainen V. It takes two to stay afloat: interplay of morphology and physiological acclimation ensures long-term floating dispersal of the bladderwrack Fucus vesiculosus (Phaeophyceae, Fucales). European Journal of Phycology, February 2020.

Jonsson PR, Moksnes P-O, Corell H, Bonsdorff E, Nilsson Jacobi M. Ecological coherence of Marine Protected Areas: New tools applied to the Baltic Sea network. Aquatic Conservation, January 2020.

Rugiu L, Panova M, Pereyra RT & Jormalainen V. Gene regulatory response to hyposalinity in the brown seaweed Fucus vesiculosus. BMC Genomics, January 2019.


 De Wit P, Jonsson PR, Pereyra RT, Panova M, André C & Johannesson K. Spatial genetic structure in a crustacean herbivore highlights the need for local considerations in Baltic Sea biodiversity management. Evolutionary Applications, December 2019.

Heckwolf MJ, Meyer BS, Häsler R, Höppner MP, Eizaguirre C, Reusch TBH. DNA methylation facilitates local adaptation and adaptive transgenerational plasticity. bioRxiv, May 2019.

Kotta J, Vanhatalo J, Jänes H, Orav-Kotta H, Rugiu L, Jormalainen V, Bobsien I, Viitasalo M, Virtanen E, Nyström Sandman A, Isaeus M, Leidenberger S, Jonsson PR and Johannesson K. Integrating experimental and distribution data to predict future species patterns. Scientific Reports, February 2019.

Rothäusler E, Uebermuth C, Haavisto F & Jormalainen, V. Living on the edge: Gamete release and subsequent fertilisation in Fucus vesiculosus (Phaeophyceae) are weakened by climate change–forced hyposaline conditions. Phycologia, January 2019.


Sandström A, Lundmark C, Andersson K, Johannesson K and Laikre L. Understanding and bridging the conservation genetics gap in marine conservation. Conservation Biology, December 2018.

De Wit P, Yamada K, Panova M, André C & Johannesson K. Diet-dependent gene expression highlights the importance of Cytochrome P450 in detoxification of algal secondary metabolites in a marine isopod. Scientific Reports, November 2018.

Lundmark C, Sandström A, Andersson K and Laikre L. Monitoring the effects of knowledge communication on conservation managers’ perception of genetic biodiversity – A case study from the Baltic Sea. Marine Policy, October 2018.

Rugiu L, Manninen I, Rothäusler E and Jormalainen V. Tolerance to climate change of the clonally reproducing endemic Baltic seaweed, Fucus radicans: is phenotypic plasticity enough? Journal of Phycology, October 2018.

Rothäusler E, Rugiu L and Jormalainen V. Forecast climate change conditions sustain growth and physiology but hamper reproduction in range-margin populations of a foundation rockweed species. Marine Environmental Research, September 2018.

Heckwolf MJ, Meyer BS, Döring T, Eizaguirre C and Reusch TBH. Transgenerational plasticity and selection shape the adaptive potential of sticklebacks to salinity change. Evolutionary Applications, August 2018.

Thorsten B. H. Reusch, Dierking J, Andersson HC, Bonsdorff E, Carstensen J, Casini M, Czajkowski M, Hasler B, Hinsby K, Hyytiäinen K, Johannesson K, Jomaa S, Jormalainen V, Kuosa H, Kurland S, Laikre L, MacKenzie BR, Margonski , Melzner F, Oesterwind D, Ojaveer H, Refsgaard JC, Sandström A, Schwarz G, Tonderski K, Winder M and Zandersen M. The Baltic Sea as a time machine for the future coastal ocean. Science Advances, May 2018.

Jonsson PR, Kotta J, Andersson HC, Herkül K, Virtanen E, Nyström Sandman A and Johannesson K. High climate velocity and population fragmentation may constrain climate-driven range shift of the key habitat former Fucus vesiculosusDiversity and Distributions, March 2018.

Rugiu L, Manninen I, Rothäusler E and Jormalainen V. Tolerance and potential for adaptation of a Baltic Sea rockweed under predicted climate change conditions. Marine Environmental Research, March 2018.

Wennerström, L, Bekkevold, D and Laikre L. Population genetics of pike. In: Biology and Ecology of Pike, Eds Christian Skov, P Anders Nilsson. Jan 2018.


Johansson D, Pereyra R T, Rafajlović M and Johannesson K. Reciprocal transplants support a plasticity-first scenario during colonisation of a large hyposaline basin by a marine macro alga. BMC Ecology 17:14.

Jonsson PJ, Kotta J, Andersson HC, Herkül K, Virtanen E, Nyström Sandman A and Johannesson K. High climate velocity and population fragmentation may constrain climate-driven range shift of the key habitat former Fucus vesiculosus. Diversity and Distributions 2018; 00:1–14.

Jormalainen V, Danelli M, Gagnon K, Hillebrand H, Rothäusler E, Salminen J-P and Sjöroos J. Genetic variation of a foundation rockweed species affects associated communities. Ecology 98: 2940-2951.

Lundmark C, Andersson K, Sandström A and Laikre L.Effectiveness of short-term knowledge communication on Baltic Sea marine genetic biodiversity to public managers. Regional Environmental Change 17:841-849.

Obregón, C., Lyndon, A. R., Barker, J., Christiansen, H., Godley, B. J., Kurland, S., Piccolo, J. J., Potts, R., Short, R., Tebb, A. and Mariani, S. Valuing and understanding fish populations in the Anthropocene: key questions to address. J Fish Biol. doi:10.1111/jfb.13536.

Olsson F, Laikre L, Hössjer O and Ryman N. GESP: A computer program for modelling genetic effective population size, inbreeding and divergence in substructured populations.Molecular Ecology Resources, 17:1378–1384.

Rafajlović M, Kleinhans D, Gulliksson C, Fries J, Johansson D, Ardehed A, Sundqvist L, Pereyra R, Mehlig B, Jonsson P and Johannesson K. Neutral processes forming large clones during colonisation of new areas. Journal of Evolutionary Biology, 30: 1544–1560.

Rothäusler E, Haavisto F, Jormalainen V. Is the future as tasty as the present? Elevated temperature and hyposalinity affect the quality of Fucus (Phaeophyceae, Fucales) as food for the isopod Idotea balthica. Marine Biology 164:7.

Rugiu L, Manninen I, Sjöroos J, Jormalainen V. Variations in tolerance to climate change in a key littoral herbivore. Marine Biology 165:18.

Rugiu L, Manninen I, Rothäusler E, Jormalainen V. Tolerance and potential for adaptation of a Baltic Sea rockweed under predicted climate change conditions. Marine Environmental Research, Vol 134: 76-84. 

Wennerström L, Jansson E and Laikre L. Baltic Sea genetic biodiversity: Current knowledge relating to conservation management. Aquatic Conservation: Marine and Freshwater Ecosystems, 27:1069–1090.

Wennerström L, Olsson J, Ryman N, Laikre L. Temporally stable, weak genetic structuring in brackish water northern pike (Esox lucius) in the Baltic Sea indicates a contrasting divergence pattern relative to freshwater populations. Canadian Journal of Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences 74:562-571.


Hössjer O, Laikre L and Ryman N. Effective sizes and time to migration–drift equilibrium in geographically subdivided populations. Theoretical Population Biology 112:139-156, 2016.

Wennerström L, Olsson J, Ryman N, & Laikre L. Temporally stable, weak genetic structuring in brackish water northern pike (Esox lucius) in the Baltic Sea indicates a contrasting divergence pattern relative to freshwater populations. Canadian Journal of Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences 2016.

Kotta J, Orav-Kotta H, Jänes H, Hummel H, Arvanitidis C, van Avesaath P, Bachelet G, Benedetti-Cecchi L, Bojanic N, Como S, Coppa S, Coughlan J, Crowe T, Dal Bello M, Degraer S, Juanes de la Pena J A, Fernandes de Matos VK, Espinosa F, Faulwetter S, Frost M, Guinda X, Jankowska E, Jourde J, Kerckhof F, Lavesque N, Leclerc J-C, Magni P, Pavloudi C, Pedrotti ML, Peleg O, Pérez-Ruzafa A, Puente A, Ribeiro P, Rilov G, Rousou M, Ruginis T, Silva T, Simon N, Sousa-Pinto I, Troncoso J, Warzocha J and Weslawski JM. Essence of the patterns of cover and richness of intertidal hard bottom communities: a pan-European study. Journal of the Marine Biological Association of the United Kingdom 2016.

Dal Bello M, Leclerc J-C, Benedetti-Cecchi L, Arvanitidis C, van Avesaath P, Bachelet G, Bojanic N, Como S, Coppa S, Coughlan J, Crowe T, Degraer S, Espinosa F, Faulwetter S, Frost M, Guinda X, Jankowska E, Jourde J, Kerckhof F, Kotta J, Lavesque N, de Lucia GA, Magni P, de Matos V, Orav-Kotta H, Pavloudi C, Pedrotti ML, Peleg O, de la Pena JAJ, Puente A, Ribeiro P, Rigaut-Jalabert F, Rilov G, Rousou M, Rubal M, Ruginis T, Pérez-Ruzafa A, Silva T, Simon N, Sousa-Pinto I, Troncoso J, Warzocha J, Weslawski J.M and Hummel H. Consistent patterns of spatial variability between NE Atlantic and Mediterranean rocky shores. Journal of the Marine Biological Association of the United Kingdom, pp. 1–9. 2016.

Rothäusler E, Sjöroos J, Heye K and Jormalainen V. Genetic variation in photosynthetic performance and tolerance to osmotic stress (desiccation, freezing, salinity) in the rocky littoral foundation species Fucus vesiculosus (Phaeophyceae, Fucales). Journal of Phycology 2016.

Ardehed A, Johansson D, Sundqvist L, Schagerström E, Zagrodzka Z, Kovaltchouk N A, Bergström L, Kautsky L, Rafajlovic M, Pereyra R T & Johannesson K. Divergence within and among Seaweed Siblings (Fucus vesiculosus and F. radicans) in the Baltic Sea. PLoS ONE 2016.

Sandström A, Lundmark C, Jansson E, Edman M & Laikre L. Assessment of management practices regarding genetic biodiversity in Baltic Sea marine protected areas. Biodiversity and Conservation 2016.

Laikre L, Lundmark C, Jansson E, Wennerström L, Edman M & Sandström, A. Lack of recognition of genetic biodiversity: International policy and its implementation in Baltic Sea marine protected areas. Ambio 2016.

Jormalainen, V, Gagnon, K, Sjöroos, J & Rothäusler, E. 2016. The invasive mud crab enforces a major shift in a rocky littoral invertebrate community of the Baltic Sea. Biological Invasions, Volume 18, Issue 5, pp 1409-1419.

Bodin Ö, Sandström A and Crona B. Collaborative networks for effective ecosystem-based management: A set of working hypotheses. Policy Studies Journal 2016.

Jonsson PR, Nilsson Jacobi M, Moksnes PO. How to select networks of marine protected areas for multiple species with different dispersal strategiesDiversity and Distributions 22, 161–173.

Puente A, Guinda X, Juanes JA, Ramos E, Echavarri-Erasun B, De La Hoz CF, Degraer S, Kerckhof F, Bojanić N, Rousou M, Orav-Kotta H, Kotta J, Jourde J, Pedrotti ML, Leclerc J-C, Simon N, Bachelet G, Lavesque N, Arvanitidis C, Pavloudi C, Faulwetter S, Crowe TP, Coughlan J, Cecchi LB, Dal Bello M, Magni P, Como S, Coppa S, De Lucia GA, Rugins T, Jankowska E, Weslawski JM, Warzocha J, Silva T, Ribeiro P, De Matos V, Sousa-Pinto I, Troncoso J, Peleg O, Rilov G, Espinosa F, Ruzafa AP, Frost M, Hummel H and Van Avesaath P. The role of physical variables in biodiversity patterns of intertidal macroalgae along European coasts. Journal of the Marine Biological Association of the United Kingdom, Vol 97, Issue 3 (European Marine Biology Symposium) pp. 549-560


Ardehed A, Johansson D, Schagerström E, Kautsky L, Johannesson K, Pereyra RT. 2015. Complex spatial clonal structure in the macroalgae Fucus radicans with both sexual and asexual recruitmentEcology and Evolution 5:4243-4245

Borgström S, Bodin Ö, Sandström A, Crona B. 2015. Developing an analytical framework for assessing progress toward ecosystem-based managementAmbio 44(3): 357-369.

Guban P, Wennerström L, Elfwing T, Sundelin B, Laikre L.Genetic diversity in Monoporeia affinis at polluted and reference sites of the Baltic Bothnian Bay. Marine Pollution Bulletin,(2015)

Hössjer O, Olsson F, Laikre L, Ryman N. Metapopulation inbreeding dynamics, effective size and subpopulation differentiation—A general analytical approach for diploid organismsTheoretical Population Biology, (2015)102: 40–59.

Liversage K, Kotta J. (2015). Disturbance-related patterns on unstable rocky benthos of the eastern Baltic coastProceedings of the Estonian Academy of Sciences, 64, 53–61. 

Rothäusler E, Corell H, Jormalainen V. Abundance and dispersal trajectories of floating Fucus vesiculosus in the Northern Baltic SeaLimnology and Oceanography, doi: 10.1002/lno.10195

Sandström A, Bodin Ö & Crona B. 2015. Network Governance from the Top: The Case of Ecosystem-based Coastal and Marine ManagementMarine Policy 55:57–63.


Hössjer O, Olsson F, Laikre L, Ryman N. A new general analytical approach for modeling patterns of genetic differentiation and effective size of subdivided populations overtimeMathematical Biosciences, (2014)258:113-133. 

Hössjer O, Ryman N. Quasi equilibrium, variance effective size and fixation index for populations with substructureJournal of Mathematical Biology, 69:1057-1128.

Ryman N, Allendorf FW, Jorde PE, Laikre L, Hössjer O. 2014. Samples from subdivided populations yield biased estimates of effective size that overestimate the rate of loss of genetic variationMolecular Ecology Resources, 14: 87-99.

Schagerström, E.; Forslund, H.; Kautsky, L.; Pärnoja, M.; Kotta, J. Does thalli complexity and biomass affect the associated flora and fauna of two co-occurring Fucus species in the Baltic Sea? Estuarine Coastal and Shelf Science, (2014) 149, 187–193.

Tolerance of Baltic Sea rocky littoral communities to climate change.
Luca Rugiu
University of Turku, Department of Biology, Section of Ecology

Population genetic patterns in continuous environments in relation to conservation management
Lovisa Wennerström
Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Zoology

Patterns of evolution in a young species, the Baltic seaweed Fucus radicans
Angelica Ardehed
University of Gothenburg, Department of Biological and Environmental Sciences

BONUS-BAMBI management recommendations. Improve adaptive potential of Baltic Sea species – include genetic diversity in management. Laikre L., Johannesson K, Sandström A, Edman M, Liljenström S. 2017. Presented at HELCOM workshop November 2017.

Genetisk mångfald - variation som gör skillnad. Johannesson K. & Liljenström S. Havsutsikt 2/2017. (In Swedish)

Gäddan inte alls så stationär som vi trott, press release from Stockholm University, Lovisa Wennerström, Sept 2016. (In Swedish)

Mål för genetisk variation i Östersjön uppfylls inte, press release from Stockholm University, Linda Laikre, April 2016. (In Swedish)

Genetic diversity a low priority, press release from Luleå University of Technology, Annica Sandström & Carina Lundmark, May 2016. 

Finding bridges between biodiversity research and exosytem-based managemet. Interactive expert teams take us closer to finding sustainable solutions for the Baltic Sea. Dierking J, Hüssy K, Laikre L. BONUS in Brief December 2015.