Shoal of small fish swimming together over seafloor with seagrass, Atlantic ocean

Plymouth has a long tradition of marine biological research that has seen it grow into a world-renowned centre of excellence in this area. 

At the University of Plymouth we carry out research on all aspects of marine life from molecular and cellular biology to whole organisms, ecology and their conservation.

Marine Biology and Ecology research 

The Marine Biology and Ecology Research Centre addresses a broad range of research questions, from the effects of environmental stress on microbes and developing embryos to the management of large scale impacts, such as global climate change. Its research is divided into six broad research themes:
Blue fish

Marine Conservation Research Group 

The Marine Conservation Research Group investigates the consequences of human activity on marine biodiversity and its ecosystem services in order to provide scientific evidence and management advice for the benefit of marine ecosystems and society. 
Within the group, there are several units working in key areas of marine conservation:
Underwater landscape, coastal

International Marine Litter Research Unit 

Marine litter is a global environmental problem with items of debris now contaminating habitats from the poles to the equator, from the sea surface to the deep sea. 
The International Marine Litter Research Unit has a mission to further our understanding of the impacts of litter on the environment and society, to identify the solutions and the pathways necessary to achieve them. 
Marine litter

Ecology and Evolution Research Group 

Several aspects of this group's work looks at marine and coastal biology:
  • Seawater flooding of coastal environments
  • Saltmarsh ecology 
  • Intertidal ecological patterns
  • Eco-engineering of coastal defences
  • Climate change effects on species distributions.
Ecology and Evolution Research Group
Environmental biotechnology induction - plant. Shutterstock.

Marine biology, ecology and conservation staff