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Integrative Marine Ecology Department

Genoa Marine Centre (GMC)
Stazione Zoologica Anton Dohrn–National Institute of Marine Biology, Ecology and Biotechnology
Villa del Principe, Piazza del Principe 4, 16126 Genoa, Italy

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Skype: massibot

Curriculum Vitae

Research Interest

Fishes are the marine animals that interacted most with humans, representing an important food source since prehistoric times. In the last 50 years, fish exploitation has become unbearable from an ecological point of view, with several species on the verge of collapse. Chondrichthyans (sharks, rays and chimaeras) are among the most vulnerable fishes, because although most of their species are not usual fishing targets (being mostly bycatches), they exhibit peculiar biological and ecological characters (such as low numbers and fertility, slow growth, great longevity, late maturity) that make these very representative marine animals highly vulnerable to human impact, both to fishing and environmental degradation. To make things worse, information about this group of fishes is scanty at best. For these reasons, sharks and their relatives are my primary research interest: my research aims to increase our knowledge of these animals, including biology, ecology and conservation, with a special focus on Mediterranean habitats. I study several aspects such as: geographical distribution; reproductive and sensory biology; spatial, trophic, and historical ecology; and chiefly how to improve their conservation through an ecosystem approach to fishery.
My research fields also include biology and ecology of Antarctic fishes.

Selected Publications

Bottaro, M., 2022. Sixth sense in the deep-sea: the electrosensory system in ghost shark Chimaera monstrosa. Scientific Reports, 12(1), 1-12.

Guidetti, P., Bottaro, M., Ciccolella, A., & Danovaro, R., 2021. Marine protected areas and endangered shark conservation. Aquatic Conservation: Marine and Freshwater Ecosystems, 31(9), 2671-2672.

Leonetti F. L., Giglio G., Leone A., Coppola F., Romano C., Bottaro M., Reinero F. R., Micarelli P., Tripepi S., Sperone E., 2020. An updated check-list of chondrichthyans of Calabria (Central Mediterranean, southern Italy), with emphasis on rare species. Mediterranean Marine Science, 21(3): 794-807.

Leonetti F. L., Sperone E., Travaglini A., Mojetta A. R., Signore M., Psomadaki, P. N., Dinkel T. M. & Bottaro M., 2020. Filling the Gap and Improving Conservation: How IUCN Red Lists and Historical Scientific Data Can Shed More Light on Threatened Sharks in the Italian Seas. 
Diversity, 12(10), 389.

Mancusi C., Baino R., Fortuna C., De Sola L. G., Morey G., Bradai M. N., ...Bottaro M. … & Dimech, M., 2020. MEDLEM database, a data collection on large Elasmobranchs in the Mediterranean and Black seas. Mediterranean Marine Science, 276-288.

Moro S., Jona‐Lasinio G., Block B., Micheli F., De Leo G., Serena F., Bottaro M., Scacco U., Ferretti F., 2019. Abundance and distribution of the white shark in the Mediterranean Sea. Fish and Fisheries, DOI: 10.1111/faf.12432.

Mojetta A.R., Travaglini A., Scacco U. & Bottaro M., 2018. Where sharks met humans: the Mediterranean sea, history and myth of an ancient interaction between two dominant predators. Regional Studies in Marine Science, 21: 30-38.

Vacchi M., DeVries A.L., Evans C.E., Bottaro M., Ghigliotti L., Cutroneo L., Pisano E., 2012. A nursery area for the Antarctic silverfish Pleuragramma antarcticum at Terra Nova Bay (Ross Sea): first estimate of distribution and abundance of eggs and larvae under the seasonal sea-ice. Polar Biology, 35 (10): 1573-1585.

Bottaro M., Oliveri D., Ghigliotti L., Pisano E., Ferrando S., Vacchi M., 2009. Born among the ice: first morphological observations on two developmental stages of the Antarctic silverfish Pleuragramma antarcticum, a key species of the Southern Ocean. Reviews in Fish Biology and Fisheries, 19:249-259.

Bottaro M., Consalvo I., Ferrando S., Gallus L., Girosi L., Psomadakis P. N., Atkinson C. J. L, Vacchi M., 2008. New records of blonde ray (Raja brachyura) from the Ligurian Sea. Marine Biodiversity records, Vol. 1; e72: p 1-3.

Bottaro M., Ferrando F., Gallus L., Girosi L., Vacchi M., 2008. First record of albinism in the deep water shark Dalatias licha. Marine Biodiversity records, Vol. 1; e10: p 1-4.

Ferrando S., Bottaro M., Pedemonte F., De Lorenzo S., Gallus L., Tagliafierro G., 2007. Appearance of crypt neurons in the olfactory epithelium of the skate Raja clavata during development. The Anatomical Record, 290: 1268-1272.

Atkinson C. J. L. & Bottaro M., 2006. Ampullary pore distribution of Galeus melastomus and Etmopterus spinax: possible relations with predatory lifestyle and habitat. Journal of the Marine Biological Association of United Kingdom, 86, 447-448.

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