Scottish Alliance for Geoscience, Environment and Society

Berta Ramiro Sanchez

Department / group: School of Geosciences
Google Scholar URL: N/A

Research interests:

Deep-sea ecology.
Biodiversity drivers.
Spatial and temporal gradients for marine organisms.

Career history:

After my undergraduate degree in Bsc (Hons) Biology in Spain, I completed a master’s degree in marine and fisheries ecology at The University of Aberdeen (UK). I later worked for a few years in the UK in projects including fish stock assessment and marine conservation. After this time, I decided to return to research and study deep-sea ecology, always my main interest. An exciting ATLAS PhD position came up at The University of Edinburgh and I took it.

Active research projects:

Biogeographical patterns in the deep ocean: environmental, biological and historical drivers in the North Atlantic.

With a special focus on the North Atlantic Ocean, the latest sources of biological information (ground-truthed taxonomic samples, deep-sea video, and predicted species distribution models) under present-day and future climate scenarios will be integrated to validate biogeographic provinces of the Global Open Oceans and Deep-Seabed (GOODS) classification system. Currently,GOODS is based on the distribution of a range of physico-chemical variables. It lacks validation with species data particularly from complex seabed habitats like vulnerable marine ecosystems, and is not dynamic with respect to how environmental variables will change under the future climate regimes predicted by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC).

I will also use species information to statistically model the importance of environmental variables including water mass structure, the biological traits of species themselves, and the impact of historical factors such as glacial cycles to improve the understanding of drivers of biogeographic patterns in the deep ocean.

Recent publications:

Berta Ramiro-Sánchez, José Manuel González-Irusta, Lea-Anne Henry, Jason Cleland, Isobel Yeo, Joana R. Xavier5, Marina Carreiro-Silva, Íris Sampaio, Jeremy Spearman, Lissette Victorero, Charles G. Messing, Georgios Kazanidis, J. Murray Roberts, Bramley Murton. 2018. Characterization and mapping of a deep-sea sponge ground on the Tropic Seamount (Northeast tropical Atlantic): implications for spatial management in the High Seas. (In prep).

Pola, M.; Sánchez-Benítez, M. and Ramiro, B. 2014. The genus Polycera Cuvier, 1817 (Nudibranchia: Polyceridae) in the Eastern Pacific Ocean, with redescription of Polycera alabe Collier & Farmer, 1964 and description of a new species. Journal of Molluscan Studies 80: 551– 561. doi:10.1093/mollus/eyu049

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