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SAMBAH - Static Acoustic Monitoring of the Baltic Sea Harbour porpoise

LIFE08 NAT/S/000261

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Contact details:

Project Manager: Mats AMUNDIN
Fax: +46107087509

Project description:


The Baltic Sea subpopulation of harbour porpoise (Phocoena phocoena) is small and has been drastically reduced in recent decades. The species is listed in Annexes II and IV of the Habitats Directive as well as in the national red lists of several Member States. This, in combination with a complex of threats and problems that are still fairly poorly understood, especially with reference to potential cumulative impacts, necessitates the need for improved methodologies for collecting data on population size and range, and its fluctuation over time.


The overall aim of the project is to apply a best practice methodology to provide data for the reliable assessment of the distribution and habitats of the Baltic Sea subpopulation of harbour porpoise (Phocoena phocoena). This should enable the designation of sites of Community importance (SCIs) for the endangered species within the Natura 2000 network, and also provide other relevant mitigation measures. Specifically, the project aims to:

  • Estimate densities, produce distribution maps and estimate numbers of harbour porpoises in the depth range of 5-80 m within the project area in the Baltic Sea (approximately south of latitude 55° 50’ N and east of longitude 12° E in the east, and south of latitude 60°20’N in the north). Data and maps will be produced by season for the whole study area, and possibly by country waters, if feasible;
  • Identify possible hotspots, habitat preferences, and areas with higher risk of conflicts with anthropogenic activities for the species. In Swedish waters, the project will use these results to identify appropriate areas for protection, and within these areas, suggest appropriate management of anthropogenic activities with known or potential negative impact;
  • Increase knowledge of the species in the nations bordering the Baltic Sea and within the EU;
  • Implement best practice methods for cost-effective, large-scale surveillance of the species in a low density area.



Environmental issues addressed:


Species - Mammals


risk assessment‚  endangered species‚  monitoring‚  survey‚  harbour‚  environmental assessment

Target species

 Phocoena phocoena     

Natura 2000 sites

Not applicable



Coordinator Kolmardens Djurpark AB
Type of organisation SME Small and medium sized enterprise
Description The beneficiary is Kolmarden (Kolmardens Djurpark AB), the largest wildlife park in Scandinavia. Led by Mats Amundin (LIFE project manager), research on dolphin behaviour and sound production has been carried out at the park’s research and education centre since 1971. In the last decade, work has focused on ways of reducing the numbers of dolphins and porpoises becoming accidently entangled in fishing nets.
Partners Swedish Environmental Protection Agency (Swedish EPA), Sweden Särkänniemi Oy, Finland Turku University of Applied Sciences (TUAS), Finland Finnish Ministry of the Environment (YM), Finland University of Gdansk (UG), Poland Institute of Meteorology and Water Management (IMGW), Sweden Chief Inspectorate of Environmental Protection (CIEP), Sweden National Environment Research Institute (NERI), Sweden Danish Forest and Nature Agency (DFNA), Denmark


Project reference LIFE08 NAT/S/000261
Duration 01-OCT-2010 to 30-SEP -2015
Total budget 4,244,013.00 €
EU contribution 2,112,098.00 €
Project location København Og Frederiksberg Kommuner(Danmark),Københavns amt(Danmark),Frederiksborg amt(Danmark),Roskilde amt(Danmark),Vestjællands amt(Danmark),Storstrøms amt(Danmark),Bornholms amt(Danmark),Fyns amt(Danmark),Sønderjyllands amt(Danmark),Ribe amt(Danmark),Vejle amt(Danmark),Ringkøbing amt(Danmark),Århus amt(Danmark),Viborg amt(Danmark),Nordjyllands amt(Danmark),Põhja-Eesti(Estonia Eesti),Lääne-Eesti(Estonia Eesti),Kesk-Eesti(Estonia Eesti),Kirde-Eesti(Estonia Eesti),Lõuna-Eesti(Estonia Eesti),Extra-Regio(Estonia Eesti),Associated Estonia (EE)(Estonia Eesti),Uusimaa(Finland Suomi),Varsinais-Suomi(Finland Suomi),Satakunta(Finland Suomi),Häme(Finland Suomi),Pirkanmaa(Finland Suomi),Päijät-Häme(Finland Suomi),Kymenlaakso(Finland Suomi),Etelä-Karjala(Finland Suomi),Etelä-Savo(Finland Suomi),Pohjois-Savo(Finland Suomi),Pohjois-Karjala(Finland Suomi),Kainuu(Finland Suomi),Keski-Suomi(Finland Suomi),Etelä-Pohjanmaa(Finland Suomi),Vaasan rannikkoseutu(Finland Suomi),Keski-Pohjanmaa(Finland Suomi),Pohjois-Pohjanmaa(Finland Suomi),Lappi(Finland Suomi),Ahvenanmaa/Åland(Finland Suomi),Baltic Sea Suomi (SF)(Finland Suomi),Alytaus apskritis(Lithuania Lietuva),Kauno apskritis(Lithuania Lietuva),Klaipedos apskritis(Lithuania Lietuva),Marijampoles apskritis(Lithuania Lietuva),Panevezio apskritis(Lithuania Lietuva),Siauliu apskritis(Lithuania Lietuva),Taurages apskritis(Lithuania Lietuva),Telsiu apskritis(Lithuania Lietuva),Utenos apskritis(Lithuania Lietuva),Vilniaus apskritis(Lithuania Lietuva),Extra-Regio(Lithuania Lietuva),Associated Lithuania (LT)(Lithuania Lietuva),Kurzeme(Latvia Latvija),Latgale(Latvia Latvija),Riga(Latvia Latvija),Pieriga(Latvia Latvija),Vidzeme(Latvia Latvija),Zemgale(Latvia Latvija),Extra-Regio(Latvia Latvija),Associated Latvia (LV)(Latvia Latvija),Stockholm(Sverige),Östra Mellansverige(Sverige),Småland med Öarna(Sverige),Sydsverige(Sverige),Västsverige(Sverige),Norra Mellansverige(Sverige),Mellersta Norrland(Sverige),Övre Norrland(Sverige),Baltic Sea Sverige (S)(Sverige)


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