Ernesto Azzurro

Ernesto Azzurro
Italian National Research Council | CNR · Istituto per le Risorse Biologiche e le Biotecnologie Marine

PhD in Ecology and Marine Biol

About

219
Publications
106,572
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5,993
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Introduction
Ecology and spatial dynamics of non-indigenous fishes, participatory approaches for monitoring/managing current changes in marine resources and biodiversity
Additional affiliations
January 2003 - January 2006
Università Politecnica delle Marche
Position
  • PhD

Publications

Publications (219)
Article
Full-text available
One of the expected effects of global change is increased variability in the abundance and distribution of living organisms, but information at the appropriate temporal and geographical scales is often lacking to observe these patterns. Here we use local knowledge as an alternative information source to study some emerging changes in Mediterranean...
Article
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The bluespotted cornetfish (Fistularia commersonii) (Osteichtyes, Fistulariidae) is consid-ered to be one of the most invasive species of the Mediterranean Sea and Europe but only scattered information exists on its distribution and abundance. Here we collated the available species records, following its first detection in the Mediterranean Sea, in...
Article
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Biological invasions have become major players in the current biodiversity crisis, but realistic tools to predict which species will establish successful populations are still unavailable. Here we present a novel approach that requires only a morphometric characterisation of the species. Using fish invasions of the Mediterranean, we show that the a...
Article
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Climatic niche conservatism, the tendency of species-climate associations to remain unchanged across space and time, is pivotal for forecasting the spread of invasive species and biodiversity changes. Indeed, it represents one of the key assumptions underlying species distribution models (SDMs), the main tool currently available for predicting rang...
Article
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Climate change and biological invasions are rapidly reshuffling species distribution, restructuring the biological communities of many ecosystems worldwide. Tracking these transformations in the marine environment is crucial, but our understanding of climate change effects and invasive species dynamics is often hampered by the practical challenge o...
Article
With over a thousand of introduced species, the Mediterranean is the most heavily invaded marine region in the world. Yet, the spatio-temporal dynamics of this bioinvasion has never been analysed. Examination of a comprehensive dataset of 4015 georeferenced observations, extracted from the scientific literature, allowed (i) reconstructing the invas...
Article
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Climate change is causing an increase in the frequency and intensity of marine heatwaves (MHWs) and mass mortality events (MMEs) of marine organisms are one of their main ecological impacts. Here, we show that during the 2015–2019 period, the Mediterranean Sea has experienced exceptional thermal conditions resulting in the onset of five consecutive...
Article
Global warming is enabling tropical invaders to expand into regions, where unsuitable climate conditions used to prevent the survival or reproduction. Here, using the occurrence data of 22 Lessepsian fish in the Mediterranean Sea, we aimed at (1) gaining a deeper understanding of temperature match dynamics over the spatio-temporal spread of each in...
Article
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Biological invasions have become a defining feature of marine Mediterranean ecosystems with significant impacts on biodiversity, ecosystem services, and human health. We systematically reviewed the current knowledge on the impacts of marine biological invasions in the Mediterranean Sea. We screened relevant literature and applied a standardised fra...
Article
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On 14th October 2021, a single specimen of Sargocentron caudimaculatum was captured in the locality of Cape Bon, Eastern Tunisia, by a local fisher using gillnets at 60 m depth, on rocky bottom. This observation represents the first record of this species in the Mediterranean Sea. General information on the squirrelfishes and the importance of mole...
Article
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Marine organisms that enter the Mediterranean from the Red Sea via the Suez Canal are known as Lessepsian bioinvaders. In general, genetic studies of Lessepsian fishes have shown little structure between Red Sea and Mediterranean populations. Yet notable exceptions suggest the importance of life-history factors that may influence patterns of spatia...
Article
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The knowledge of small-scale fisheries (SSFs) is important to develop management policies and mitigate the competition for marine resources. However, spatially explicit information is often unavailable at the regional and subregional scale. We designed and tested a novel participatory approach to map the SSF fishing effort using the Mediterranean s...
Article
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In January 2021 during a scientific survey to assess the economic impacts of a Mass Mortality Event, a single individual of the Gracile lizardfish Saurida gracilis (Quoy & Gaimard, 1824) was caught out of Korbous (Northern Tunisia). This observation, confirmed by genetic analysis, provides evidence on the occurrence of a new non-indigenous species...
Article
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Marine organisms that enter the Mediter-ranean from the Red Sea via the Suez Canal are known as Lessepsian bioinvaders. In general, genetic studies of Lessepsian fishes have shown little structure between Red Sea and Mediterranean populations. Yet notable exceptions suggest the importance of life-history factors that may influence patterns of spati...
Article
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This Collective Article includes records of 29 alien and cryptogenic species in the Mediterranean Sea, belonging to eight Phyla (Rhodophyta, Ochrophyta, Cnidaria, Annelida, Mollusca, Arthropoda, Echinodermata, and Chordata) and coming from 11 countries. Notes published here can be divided into three different categories: occupancy estimation for wi...
Article
The invasive sally lightfoot crab Percnon gibbesi (H. Milne Edwards, 1853) has spread among the coasts of the Mediterranean Sea, including the coasts of Annaba Gulf (Algeria). Investigating the trophic position of the species and looking for the seasonal variations in the diet of this alien decapod was the aim of this study. To do this, samples of...
Article
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This Collective Article presents information about 27 taxa belonging to five Phyla (one Ochrophyta, one Cnidaria, three Arthropoda, two Mollusca and twenty Chordata) and extending from the Western Mediterranean Sea to the Levantine Sea and the Black Sea (Sea of Marmara). The new records were reported from 11 countries as follows: Algeria: occurrenc...
Article
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The occurrence of the rendezvous fish, Polymetme corythaeola (Alcock, 1898) in Mediterranean Sea is here reported for the first time. A single individual of this benthopelagic fish was caught in February 2020 during a scientific trawl survey. The specimen was collected at a depth of 369 m (upper slope) in the Gulf of Roses (Catalonia, north‐western...
Article
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Marine Protected Areas (MPAs) are particularly useful to assess fish assemblages and to obtain reliable fish inventories. In this study we demonstrate the value of underwater photo contests as complementary tools to achieve these goals. We examined 3513 underwater pictures taken by free divers and scuba divers participating in two photo contests or...
Book
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A 365 pages Atlas, entirely revised, covering a total of 188 exotic fishes. A majority of these species (107) are new to the 2nd edition, having reached the Mediterranean in recent years. Richly illustrated, backed-up by an abundance of maps and bibliographic references, this volume presents the current geography, mode of introduction, distinct tax...
Preprint
Lessepsian fishes, entering the Mediterranean through the Suez Canal, have showed so far little genetic structure, but notable exceptions suggest the importance of life-history factors that may influence their patterns of spatial genetic variation. In this study, by sampling two invasive fishes with different life histories (the rabbitfish Siganus...
Article
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The silver-cheeked toadfish (Lagocephalus sceleratus, from the pufferfish family Tetraodontidae) and the Pacific red lionfish (Pterois miles, family Scorpaenidae) have recently invaded the Mediterranean Sea. Lagocephalus sceleratus has spread throughout this entire sea with the highest concentrations in the eastern basin, while more recently, Ptero...
Article
Invasive species are a growing driver of change across terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems but spatially-explicit information is seldom available for supporting management actions and decision making. Here we conceived and tested a new participatory method to map the distribution of three invasive species (Callinectes sapidus, Procambarus clarkii an...
Article
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This article includes twenty (20) new records of alien and cryptogenic species in the Mediterranean Sea, belonging to six (6) Phyla (Rhodophyta, Tracheophyta, Mollusca, Arthropoda, Bryozoa, and Chordata) distributed from the Eastern Mediterranean to the Sea of Alboran. The records are reported from nine (9) countries and can be classified into two...
Article
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The European Regulation (EU) 1143/2014 on Invasive Alien Species entered into force in 2015, with the aim to fulfill regional and international biodiversity goals in a concerted manner. To date, the Regulation listed 66 Invasive Alien Species (IAS) that are subject to legal controls. Only one of these is marine. A recent lionfish (Pterois miles) in...
Article
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On March 2020, the Soldierbream Argyrops filamentosus (Valenciennes, 1830) was spotted in the Specially Protected Areas of Zembra island (eastern Tunisia) during the implementation of regular monitoring activities. One single individual was later captured nearby by gillnets at 60 m depth. This record stands for the second reported observation of th...
Preprint
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Fishes of the genus Abudefduf are increasingly being recorded in Mediterranean waters, with most of these occurrences being based on the sole inspection of underwater images or video footage. Here we present a critical review of these occurrences, taking into account the uncertainties related to the identification of the congeneric A. vaigiensis an...
Article
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This article includes 23 new records of alien and cryptogenic species in the Mediterranean Sea, belonging to 4 Phyla (Chordata, Echinodermata, Arthropoda and Mollusca), distributed from the Alboran to the Levantine Sea. Records are reported from eight countries listed from West to East as follows: Algeria: new records of the Atlantic blue crab Call...
Preprint
Full-text available
Aquatic Invasive species (AIS) are a growing driver of change across marine and freshwater ecosystems but spatially-explicit information is seldom available for supporting management actions and decision making. Here we conceived and tested a new participatory method to map the distribution of three invasive species (Callinectes sapidus, Procambaru...
Article
The ecological monitoring in Marine Protected Areas (MPAs) needs technological implementation to achieve the standard required for an advanced ecosystem management. This paper describes the use, and provide the initial results of a continuous time-lapse image monitoring system, cabled with underwater cameras located in a Natura 2000 site: Šibenik (...
Article
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Italy, at the center of the Mediterranean Sea, hosts a high diversity of fishes, but to a certain extent, this richness remains hidden or poorly known because of rare, cryptic or recently introduced species, that are hardly to detect with the traditional sampling approaches. In this study, we gained complementary knowledge, engaging Italian sea use...
Article
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Marine bioinvasions require integrating monitoring tools with other complementary strategies. In this study, we collected information about the invasive alien crab Callinectes sapidus in Italy, Croatia and Montenegro, by means of online questionnaires administered to recreational fishers (n = 797). Our records matched the current distribution of th...
Article
The common lionfish Pterois miles has rapidly spread across the eastern Mediterranean Sea. We compiled occurrence data from both native and invaded range under the framework of Species Distribution Modelling (SDM). Through a construction of an environmental suitability model and estimation of spread rates we investigated the lionfish climate niche...
Article
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The occurrence of Siganus fuscescens was recorded on March 1st 2020, within the harbour of Gioia Tauro, southern Tyrrhenian Sea (38.44428 N, 15.90459 E). The capture was realized by a recreational fisher and shared through a Facebook group. Here we illustrate this new record and discussed its relevance for Mediterranean bioinvasion research.
Article
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Good datasets of geo-referenced records of alien species are a prerequisite for assessing the spatio-temporal dynamics of biological invasions, their invasive potential, and the magnitude of their impacts. However, with the exception of first records on a country level or wider regions, observations of species presence tend to remain unpublished, b...
Article
Full-text available
Good datasets of geo-referenced records of alien species are a prerequisite for assessing the spatio-temporal dynamics of biological invasions, their invasive potential, and the magnitude of their impacts. However, with the exception of first records on a country level or wider regions, observations of species presence tend to remain unpublished, b...
Article
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1. The disproportionately low presence of marine species in the list of invasive alien species (IAS) of Union concern of the European Union (EU) Regulation 1143/2014 does not fully acknowledge the threat they pose to the EU marine environment. 2. In this study, the first EU-scale Horizon Scanning (HS) focusing on marine alien species was performed,...
Article
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1. The disproportionately low presence of marine species in the list of invasive alien species (IAS) of union concern of the European Union (EU) Regulation 1143/2014 does not fully acknowledge the threat they pose to the EU marine environment. 2. In this study, the first EU-scale horizon scanning focusing on marine alien species was performed, aimi...
Article
Here we used a method of morphological niche analysis, previously shown to be an effective predictor of invasion success, to investigate morphological relationships of sagittae otoliths of Lessepsian (Red sea species entering the Mediterranean through the Suez Canal) fishes within the morphospace of the corresponding receiving taxonomic groups. Ove...
Preprint
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Here, we investigate the recent spatio-temporal dynamics of the bluefish Pomatomus saltatrix, a warm water species, which is considered to have conquered the northern Mediterranean coasts due to climate warming. Capitalizing two independent surveys carried out through online questionnaires and vis-à-vis interviews, we accessed the ecological knowle...
Article
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On November 2019, a single individual of Acanthopagrus bifasciatus was captured along the coast of Barcelona. Its external characteristics were described and morphologically analysed. This record represents the second confirmed observation of this species in the Mediterranean Sea and the first for the western basin. Its detection in a commercial ha...
Article
Mediterranean marine protected areas (MPAs), designed to achieve long-term nature conservation, are progressively conquered by invasive species of tropical origin, posing novel challenges for managers and policymakers of the 21st century. In this study, we assessed the vulnerability of 142 coastal Mediterranean MPAs to nine of the most invasive fis...
Preprint
Full-text available
Marine bioinvasions require integrating monitoring tools with other complementary strategies. In this study, we collected information about the invasive Callinectes sapidus in Italy, Croatia and Montenegro, by means of online questionnaires administered to recreational fishers (n = 797). Our records matched the current distribution of the species:...
Article
Full-text available
We present a comprehensive review of the available global literature on the genetics and genomics of marine fish invasions. Overall this review provides data from 66 species belonging to 39 families, collected from 80 published studies on both WoS (Web of Science) and Scopus databases. We found that studies on alien fishes focused on specific geogr...
Article
The development of approaches to predict the distribution and potential expansion of invasive species is still an open challenge. Here our goal is to improve the modelling procedure for marine invaders by coupling Species Distribution Models (SDMs) with an analysis of their univariate niche dynamics. In particular, we tested for the first time whet...
Article
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Anthropogenic climate change, and global warming in particular, has strong and increasing impacts on marine ecosystems (Poloczanska et al., 2013; Halpern et al., 2015; Smale et al., 2019). The Mediterranean Sea is considered a marine biodiversity hotspot contributing to more than 7% of world’s marine biodiversity including a high percentage of ende...
Article
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The ling Molva molva is a widespread gadid in the Northeast Atlantic and one example of a poorly studied species of particular interest, being its distribution affected by climate warming. The ling supposedly occurs in the cold waters of the Northwestern Mediterranean Sea, where it used to be commonly fished, but to our best knowledge, records of M...
Article
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Managing invasive alien species is particularly challenging in the ocean mainly because marine ecosystems are highly connected across broad spatial scales. Eradication of marine invasive species has only been achieved when species were detected early, and management responded rapidly. Generalized approaches, transferable across marine regions, for...
Article
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In an increasingly anthropic world, humans have profound impacts on the distribution and behaviour of marine fishes. The increased human presence has modified fishes’ antipredator behavioural responses, and consequently flight decisions, as a function of their changed perceptions of risk. Understanding how fish react to human presence can help iden...