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Celebrating the success of the REEForest Life project in Cilento!

We are thrilled to share the news of the successuful reintroduction of Cystoseira seedlings in Cilento marking the first large-scale intervention in the Mediterranean.

After a month of growth in the aquariums of the University of Trieste, the Cystoseira seedlings were recently outplanted on the seabed of the receiving site near Agropoli (SA), restoring the Cystoseira marine forests in the Cilento National Park.

Restoring these marine forests requires the reintroduction of a large number of thalli to the seabed.
Thanks to our dedicated efforts, thousands of Cystoseira seedlings are flourishing in the Santa Maria di Castellabate Marine Protected Area.
The process involved overcoming numerous challenges and delicate phases, starting with the collection of fertile apexes from the abundant and thriving Cystoseira population in the the “donor” site in Punta Licosa.
Subsequently, 1200 replanting units were carefully seeded and cultured in the Macroalgal Biodiversity and Ecophysiology Laboratory of the University of Trieste.
Finally, under the controlled conditions meticulously managed by researchers  from Shoreline and the University of Parthenope, the seedlings were outplanted in Cilento.
To ensure the maximum efficiency and optimize the process, the outplanting was divided into two phases.
In this first phase, the clay tiles (replanting units) with the seedlings a few millimeters high, were carefully affixed in groups of 50 to temporary modules.
We are now waiting for the second phase, during which the tiles will be directly placed on the rocky seabed.
This way, the survived Cystoseira can continue to thrive, in hopes that by next spring, they will reach maturity and be able to reproduce, repopulating the surrounding areas.

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Co-funded by the European Union. Views and opinions expressed are however those of the author(s) only and do not necessarily reflect those of the European Union or CINEA. Neither the European Union nor the granting authority can be held responsible for them.
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