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The northern Bothnian Bay is a unique area in the most northern part of the Baltic Sea. It is shared between Sweden in the west and Finland in the east. What hides beneath its surface is today still largely unknow. To uphold an effective and sustainable management of the area and its ecosystem services, improved knowledge of the marine environment as well as management collaborations across the border is crucial.

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Bothnian Bay National Park (Perämeren kansallispuisto) outside of Torneå and Kemi on the Finnish side of the bay (Photo by Ville Savilampi, Metsähallitus)

The SEAmBOTH project is a three years project partly funded by Interreg Nord. The main goal of the project is to help ensure the conservation of the biological diversity, habitats, ecosystems and the ecosystem services existing within the Bothnian Bay.

The sea floor will be mapped by high-tech sonars and multibeam equipment, the vegetation will be investigated by scuba divers and in the very shallow areas laser scanning planes will fly across to measure the depths. With the help of the collected and existing data, maps of the underwater landscape are to be produced. The maps will in turn serve as support for decision-makers, urban planners, environmental inspectors etc., as well as providing valuable information for the public.

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Field survey trip investigating the underwater vegetation of the northern Bothnian Bay (Photo by Rahmona Belgaid, Metsähallitus)

 

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Special species: Water soldier Stratiotes aloides

Water soldier, or water pineapple, is a weird relict species of aquatic plant in Finland and in Sweden. The English name is easy to understand from the appearance of the species. It looks like a pineapple, and its leaves are sharply serrated like soldiers’ swords. It was left here in the lakes during the warmer … Continue reading Special species: Water soldier Stratiotes aloides

One Bothnian Bay, and a sea of laws regulating it…

The today’s and future status of the northern Bothnian Bay is to a large extent decided by the laws regulating activities in and around it and the regulations stating what quality of environment we want and don’t want. The sea is the same but the legal framework looks different in Sweden and Finland. One thing … Continue reading One Bothnian Bay, and a sea of laws regulating it…

How we do it: Empowering the stakeholders

What do you get when you give paints, sticks and canvases to a bunch of SEAmBOTH stakeholders and tell them to drip, drop, slam, splatter and splurge us a better and a healthier Bothnian Bay? You get a triptyck of three individual, yet still connected paintings with beautifully balanced colors and patterns, that look like … Continue reading How we do it: Empowering the stakeholders

Special species: Fresh water species in the Bothnian Bay

Some species of vascular plants and other macrophytes (the plants, water mosses and algae that we can see) are adapted to marine water. This means, that the lower salinity level will limit their distribution. They also have a maximum salinity level where the environmental stress from the salty water will get too high and they … Continue reading Special species: Fresh water species in the Bothnian Bay

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