SEAmBOTH project at its end

Today is the last day of SEAmBOTH the Project. It’s been a wonderful journey of discovery to the bottom of the Bothnian Bay, and to cooperation between two countries and different organizations. This webpage will live on and we will inform everyone when the final report will appear. Now we will work hard to make sure our results are easily accessible to our end-users and we’ll inform everyone where the results can be found (except many of the reports are already in our Results -page, and you can always go back to watching the final seminar presentations). Thank you for all for you interest along these interesting three years!

Five different photos and a little description of the SEAmBOTH project

SEAmBOTH results in Finnish

SEAmBOTH results were presented in Finnish at Oulu library Feb 24th 2020. Final seminar presentations (in English here) were translated into Finnish and about twenty interested participants representing various stakeholders discussed the results. Some of the results were also published in the local newspaper Kaleva the next day.

A presenter and a presentation on the background.
Anna Antinoja presenting biological results. Photo by Essi Keskinen

19.2.2020 SEAmBOTH final seminar tomorrow!

SEAmBOTH final seminar will be held at the University of Oulu on Thursday 20th of February 2020 at 9-16. We will present the results from the three year field and analyzing work and we have guest speakers from both Finland and Sweden. You can see the program at the webpage. If you want to see the seminar online, there is a link at the end of the program. The presentations will be recorded and posted to the webpage later. Also material, which will be published at the final seminar will be posted at the webpage later. So stay tuned and see us tomorrow via weblink or watch the presentations later!

SEAmBOTH people working hard to provide the final seminar participants with SEAmBOTH material. 70 USB-sticks are being filled!

23.1.2020 Interviews for “SEAmboth – the MOVIE”

Today Essi from Metsähallitus and Linnea from Länsstyrelsen have been in Luleå and they have been interviewed for SEAmBOTH video. The video will tell about our project, it will be bilingual and it’ll be published in our final seminar on 20th of February. You can register to our final seminar here.

Linnea in the interview, photo by Essi Keskinen, Metsähallitus.

18.12.2019 Drone flying over sea ice

Today Metsähallitus and the Centre for Economic Development, Transport and the Environment of Northern Ostrobothnia joined their forces to get some nice drone videos of the sea ice and the open sea at the Bothnian Bay. This material will be used in a video which tells about the SEAmBOTH-project, so stay tuned, video will be published in 2020!

Photo by Suvi Saarnio, Metsähallitus.

December 2019 first SEAmboth thesis is out!

Sjef Heijnen from HAS University of Applied Sciences, The Netherlands, did his 6 month internship in the SEAmBOTH project during spring and field season 2019 in Metsähallitus, Finland. During the field season he collected data about four endangered aquatic vascular plants inside and outside of nature reserves as part of the field team. During the three field seasons 2017-2019, 5,5 % of biological sampling points that Metsähallitus has done in the Finnish SEAmBOTH area, have had at least one of these threatened vascular plants in them. Also, the occurrence of threatened species is much higher inside the nature reserves than outside their boundaries. Either this means that the nature reserves are really protecting the threatened species, or that the threatened species only exist in the nature reserves in the first place, because of suitable habitats exist only inside the nature reserves and the boundaries have been well drawn when creating them. The report is also a good summary of different Finnish marine and other nature protection areas, and a comprehensive summary of different laws and directives regulating management of underwater marine nature.

17.10.2019 Stakeholder workshop in Oulu

Second stakeholder workshop was held in Oulu, Finland, Oct 17th 2019 in Kokardiklubi in a former military movie theater. Among the 30 interested participants were civil servants, boaters, students, scuba divers, consultants etc. We discussed about marine spatial planning, finding the most valuable underwater areas and about the various different conservation areas that can be found in the Bothnian Bay. We also discussed about the end users’ view on the final products – the maps. One part of the workshop was an action painting class where we painted the future Bothnian Bay together.

Action painting part of the workshop. Photo by Essi Keskinen, Metsähallitus.

15.-16.10.2019 Harmonization workshop in Oulu

SEAmBOTH organised a workshop in Oulu for discussing the management of nature conservation areas and environmental permissions in Sweden and Finland. We had participants from Metsähallitus, Centre for Economic Development, Transport and the Environment (ELY Centre), Council of Oulu region and County Administrative Board Länsstyrelsen Norrbotten.

Swedish and Finnish colleagues working together. Photo by Essi Keskinen, Metsähallitus.

17.9.2019 School kids learning about SEAmBOTH

This week 8th and 9th graders from Luleå are visiting Pateniemi school in Oulu area. The kids and their teachers visited University of Oulu and then came to see what marine biologists in Metsähallitus are doing in the Bothnian Bay. We explained about the SEAmBOTH project, showed drop video and scuba diving equipment and finally let the kids put the survival suits on and jump into the sea.

Into the Bothnian Bay! Photo by Essi Keskinen, Metsähallitus.

It was difficult to get them back on solid ground again when they were trying how the suits are floating them, taking underwater photos and examining underwater vegetation with water binoculars. Hopefully the kids take home some fun memories and also some recollection of why we are trying to map the underwater world and how we are doing it.

7.-8.8.2019 New clay “canyon” found from the Bothnian Bay

Metsähallitus SEAmBOTH-team got a tip from a local diver about a clay area between Ulkokrunni and Maakrunni. On 7th of August our field team first took drop-videos of the area, and after finding clay, we made a transect line. We found a beautiful clay “canyon” and had an amazing dive there.

On 8th of August our team joined forces with the Geological Survey of Finland and took samples from a clay labyrinth found in 2014.

Clay labyrinth from above the surface and diver’s bubbles (Photo by Jaakko Haapamäki, Metsähallitus).
Clay canyon and diver analyzing the area (Photo by Eveliina Lampinen, Metsähallitus).

New information of underwater species in Finland

Intermediat water-starwort Callitriche hamulate has been found in Finnish SEAmBOTH area for the first time. Previously this light green and inconspicuous underwater vascular plant was thought to exist mainly in mainland Lapland and in Central Finland. This summer it has been confirmed for the first time that the species also exists in the Finnish coast of the Bothnian Bay, mainly in river estuaries and other extremely low salinity habitats. Read more about this and other exciting vascular plant distribution news in Finnish from Metsähallitus blog.

Callitriche hamulata close up from a microscope (Petra Saari, Metsähallitus).

7.6.2019 Round goby Neogobius melanostomus spreading to seamboth area in finland

7.6.2019 an aggressively spreading alien species round goby was found outside Oulu, Finland, for the first time. This is the northernmost confirmed finding of this species in Finland and in the SEAmBOTH project area. In Sweden, it has not spread to north yet, but it seems to be just a matter of time.

This round goby has lost it’s black spot from the dorsal fin due to injury from the fishing net. Photo by Suvi Saarnio, Metsähallitus

13.-17.5.2019 GeoHab2019 in st. petersburg

SEAmBOTH is well-presented in GeoHab-conference in St. Petersburg with Aarno from Geological Survey of Finland, Peter and Gustav from Geological Survey of Sweden and Essi & Suvi from Metsähallitus.

We are presenting posters about our work in the Northern Bothnian Bay and you can download them under the image below.

Essi presenting one of our posters.

07.-08.05.2019 Zonation workshop in Oulu

SEAmBOTH arranged a workshop for the project group members about the Zonation analysis and other ways of giving value to marine nature.

Elina VIrtanen (SYKE) introducing the Zonation analysis.
Linnea Bergdahl presenting the MOSAIC-approach developed in Sweden.

11.04.2019 BOthnian Bay workshop in Oulu

Metsähallitus SEAmBOTH-team organized a workshop for stakeholders about the Bothnian Bay area in Oulu. Nearly 30 stakeholders from various sectors, representing NGOs, harbours, fishermen, boaters, municipality civil servants, marine spatial planners, consultant groups etc took part in a lively dialogue and two workshop sessions.

The workshop was organized in a three story bar to avoid the “white walls and a class room” effect and create a more open environment for various different stakeholders to have a conversation and air their thoughts about sharing the common Bothnian Bay. At the same time, one of the goals of the workshop was to get an understanding about what the project could deliver to the various stakeholders.

The conversation was very lively and many participants thanked us of the opportunity to get their voice heard in the marine spatial planning and other Bothnian Bay related issues.

The SEAmBOTH project and Metsähallitus wants to thank all participants for a really successful workshop!

09.04.2019 Preparing for the last field season

Metsähallitus SEAmBOTH marine team for field season 2019 has been chosen! We have started all the preparations for the field season and cannot wait for the ice to melt from the Bothnian Bay 🙂

Our trainee Sjef has taken the direction towards Summer!

08.03.2019 Every ninth species in finland is threatened

Today Finland released the new threat status of Finnish species – Red book of Finnish species. Every ninth species is threatened, but there is light at the end of the tunnel too.  For example, SEAmBOTH’s regionally threatened species, a tiny water moss Fissidens fontanus, was taken off the list of threatened species. Not because it is doing any better nowadays, but because we know so much more about it. The species is small and can only been found by scuba diving.  Species mapping projects like SEAmBOTH have significantly increased the number of known localities with Fissidens fontanus, and the increased knowledge alone was enough to take the species off the list. This shows that we nowadays have sufficient data to give accurate estimates of the threat status of species and pressures towards them. And as a consequence, we can actually take actions towards mitigating biodiversity loss.

Read more about the threatened species and the importance of marine inventories in the Metsähallitus merellä blog

Marine inventories have increased our knowledge about the tiny water moss Fissidens fontanus. It used to be listed as a threatened species but is now taken off the list due to the increased amount of data with sightings of it. (Photo by Essi Keskinen, Metsähallitus)

15.01.2019 We are “Project of the month” on Interreg Nord website

Check us out in swedish and finnish on the Interreg Nord website!


30.11.2018 Northern Bothnian Bay appointed important by UN convention

Nine areas (EBSA) within the Baltic Sea has been appointed as especially important by the UN Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD). One of them being the northern Bothnian Bay – home of the SEAmBOTH-project.

Read more:

6.-7.11.2018 2nd Arctic Project Clustering Event

SEAmBOTH-team travelled to Rovaniemi to meet specialists from other projects, to share experiences and to make new partnerships. It might be so that there is some new co-operation happening in the future!


18.-19.9.2018 Future of the Gulf of Bothnia Seminar

We took part in the Future of the Gulf of Bothnia Seminar organized by the SmartSea. There were interesting presentations about the climate change in the area, marine spatial planning, fish production and blue growth etc. There will be a blog published soon about the seminar, so stay tuned!

17.8.2018 First Macroplea pubipennis (aquatic beetle) found in Sweden

The sighting was made in Piteå, just south of the SEAmBOTH project area, so now we’re very hopeful to find it further north along the Swedish coast within the SEAmBOTH area. See pictures and article in the local newspaper Haparandabladet:  “Sällsynt vattenskalbagge i Bottenviken”


14.8.2018 Blog published about SEAmBOTH by Centrum Balticum

Our Project Coordinator Essi Keskinen wrote a blog about our project and it was published by Centrum Balticum, you can read the blog from here.

1.8.2018 GTK and Metsähallitus SEAmBOTH in national Finnish TV

YLE Kemi news station visited Metsähallitus and GTK (Geological Survey of Finland) field inventory sites outside Kemi on Tuesday 31.7.2018 and released the news on the national TV on Wednesday 1.8.2018. Two journalists spent a couple of hours with Metsähallitus team to film everything we do in the field, and to interview team members. We also visited Geomari, GTK’s field vessel, and saw a freshly taken benthic sediment sample being processed. You can see the news at about 3 minutes of the news.

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11.7.2018 Stakeholder meeting in Ulkokrunni, Finland

Metsähallitus organized a stakeholder meeting in Ulkokrunni Island at the Bothnian Bay field station, which is owned by the University of Oulu. We were able to talk to fishermen, recreational boaters, scuba divers, Oulu University personnel, Search and rescue team, Meritaito (Expertise in Maritime Engineering and Marine Environment Protection) and Maakrunni association, to mention a few. We had an interesting conversation about what the stakeholders wish from the Seamless Bothnian Bay SEAmBOTH project and have a clearer view about which direction to go. Thank you for all stakeholders who attended!


6-7.6.2018 SEAmBOTH in SDB day!

Satellite derived bathymetry and user conference was held in Herrsching, Germany in the beginning of June. We attended to see what is going on in the field of satellite based research, what kind of images are available and maybe get some ideas about how to use satellite images in our project. The presentations were mostly in the field of maritime industries, navigation and dredging, but some also focused on ecology. The conference was mainly spent making contacts with the experts of the field and getting a grip on the scale and possibilities of the usage of satellite images in our project.

©EOMAP GmbH & Co. KG 2018


29.6.-1.7.2018 Dive Perämeri -event

As part of the week-long archipelago days, Perämeren Saaristopäivät, in the Bothnian Bay National Park, Finland, SEAmBOTH organized a diving event 29.6-1.7.2018. Divers arrived from nearby Kemi and Tornio with their dive club live-aboard boats, while other divers from Rovaniemi, Oulu and even more from Tampere arrived with them.  The aims of the event were to dive in the national park, talk about the SEAmBOTH project and the underwater nature in the Northern Bothnian Bay, and to get to know the marine species along the underwater nature trail. The divers were happy with the dive sites and the information about the underwater nature, and they understood very well the need to combine the two countries’ data together as comprehensive maps. Divers are some of the project’s stakeholders, who appreciate the healthy underwater nature and knowledge of the species, and are ready to work towards a better known Bothnian Bay.


Perfectly calm Bothnian Bay! Photo by Mikko Nieminen.
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Diver entering the water. Photo by Suvi Saarnio, Metsähallitus.


27.-28.6.2018 Field trip to twin-parks

SEAmBOTH project group members from four different partner organizations gathered in the Bothnian Bay National Park in Selkä-Sarvi island for a two day excursion in 27-28th of June 2018. The field trip was hosted by Metsähallitus. The same week is celebrated by a week-long Visit Perämeri -event, when the Bothnian Bay National Park featured pop up restaurants, charter boats, guided tours and all kinds of events every day. We visited three islands in the Bothnian Bay National Park and one island in the Haparanda Skärgårds National Park, both pilot areas for the SEAmBOTH project. Metsähallitus also introduced other partners to underwater inventory methods of drop-videos and wading points – every project group member got to try both ways of underwater species and habitat mapping. We found an endangered plant Alisma wahlenbergii and a dead seal. The weather changed between very windy and sunny to completely calm and rainy in just one day. This is nothing new in the sea. The field excursion was a success and we hope to go to the Swedish side of the project area next year.





30.-31.5.2018 Drone training with KvarkenFlada

Suvi from Metsähallitus went to Vaasa to learn how to use a drone in biological mapping. Roosa from KvarkenFlada ( taught Suvi and now we can use the drone in SEAmBOTH-mapping during the next field season. Photos by Roosa Mikkola, Metsähallitus.




28.-30.5.2018 School kids days and Toivon Agenda 2030 -event in Oulu

Metsähallitus presented their marine biological work to a lot of school kids 28-30.5.2018 in the Oulu area in Finland. On Monday, more than a hundred 7-9th graders visited Metsähallitus marine biologists out by the sea, where they explained about their work and the SEAmBOTH project. On Tuesday, Metsähallitus participated in Toivon Agenda 2030, part of the European sustainable development week, child and youth event, where more than 1500 school kids and their teachers were familiarized with concepts such as “clean underwater nature” and “blue growth”. On Wednesday, Metsähallitus marine biologist Essi Keskinen visited Ritaharju School in Oulu, where school kids had taken water samples in different seasons and wanted to interview someone, who could explain the marine life in the Bothnian Bay to them. At the same time, all kids learned about the SEAmBOTH project and heard, why we have to co-operate with the Swedish marine authorities to be able to manage our joined sea area together. We also promoted the European Maritime Day #EMD2018. EMD is celebrated annually across Europe to raise awareness of maritime sectors and support an integrated approach to maritime affairs.

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30.4.2018 Blogpost about SEAmBOTH in Geoblogi

Our readers who can read Finnish can check this article in Geoblogi which was written by geologist Outi Hyttinen who is working in SEAmBOTH. In the blog Outi explains about the special geological history of the Bothnian Bay and how the geology of the region can be investigated. Link to the blog can be found from here.

25.-26.4.2018 Project group meeting in Haparanda, Sweden

We had a very productive meeting with the project group in Haparanda. We discussed about all the things we have done so far since last project meeting in November 2017 and what are the plans for the field season 2018.


24.-25.4.2018 Workshop on nature value assessment in Haparanda, Sweden

Experts are trying to give nature a value: does an endangered species score more than it’s nesting ground if its nesting ground is common? How to value the functions that the habitats and species are performing? Not such a piece of cake!

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12.–13.3.2018 SeaGIS 2.0 final seminar in Vaasa

Suvi attended the SeaGIS 2.0 final seminar in Vaasa to learn about the experiences and findings of a very similar project as SEAmBOTH. The seminar was very interesting, the topics were very varying and there were almost 100 participants. Here you can check the topics (in Swedish and Finnish):

Pekka Salminen (Regional council of Southwest Finland) talking about maritime spatial planning in Finland (Photo by Suvi Saarnio, Metsähallitus).
Jari Haapala (Finnish Meteorological Institute) talked about the effects of climate change in the Gulf of Bothnia region (Photo by Suvi Saarnio, Metsähallitus).