Marine Animal Ecology Group

Marine Animal Ecology Group

Marine animal ecology (MAE) studies how marine animals adapt in response to a changing environment. Our research is focused on different organismal levels, from eco-physiology, early life-stage development, population genomics, up to whole ecological community responses. We subsequently apply our research to gain an understanding of the consequences of anthropogenic activities to ecosystem services and conservation management.

Highlighted student projects

At MAE we are working on various research lines. Students can join the research efforts via thesis projects, internships, research practices and/or short research projects. See below for some highlighted projects. If you are interested in any of these, please contact!

MSc thesis:

Modelling probability of disease spread in Caribbean sea urchins. Available later this year, based in Wageningen.

Potential of nutrient-rich sludge from water treatment plants for food industry. Ecotoxicological work in mesocosms. Available from March 2023.

Developing a digital twin of a marine bivalve. Available any time.

Population structure analysis of thornback ray through DNA from beached egg cases. Available from April or from September.

Seasonality of western Wadden Sea fish. Fieldwork in Texel, available from September or potentially a little earlier.

Ecophysiological tolerance of macrozoobenthos. Fieldwork in Texel, available from June.


Analysing coral growth, survival and health from a long-term Maldivian monitoring and restoration project by Van Oord. This project can start at any moment and is based in Rotterdam (but with opportunities to work from home).

Two projects available at Oceans of Energy. One on collecting water quality data at sea, and one on performing stakeholder interviews to make environmental synergies. See this link for more information.

Diversity and spatial ecology of Svalbard methane seeps at the University of Centre in Svalbard. A project on species diversity, community composition and spatial patterns of benthic fauna in Svalbard.

Gas, glaciers and Svalbard's seafloor at the University of Centre in Svalbard. A project on species diversity, community composition and how glaciers influence those.

Welfare assessment of sea turtles in Blijdorp Zoo. This project is available now!

Also check internship opportunities at Wageningen Marine Research.

MAE Blogs

Marine Lake Expeditions

Marine Lake Expeditions!

Read this blog

Svalbard Expeditions


Read this blog

The Marine Animal Ecology group (MAE) is part of the cluster Biology and Aquatic Resilience.