Greece is a remarkable, underappreciated nation for biodiversity. Brilliant blue coastlines stretch for 16,000 km, and with more than 10,000 unique islands, the nation boasts a spectacular array of habitats that give rise to an abundant diversity of fauna and flora.
It is a nation of huge potential as a biodiversity hotspot for Europe. But it is also a nation where many populations of charismatic species have declined across the centuries. Chief among these is the Mediterranean monk seal – a species hunted and persecuted since Roman times. Today, habitat degradation and negative interactions with fisheries, mainly through deliberate killing of monk seals and entanglement in fishing gear, is one of the main threats to the species' survival. At TENT, our newest region for conservation is Greece, and we’re beginning our quest with an effort to conserve the Mediterranean monk seal. Though TENT is usually focused on terrestrial conservation, the monk seal has been dubbed the ‘wolf of the water’, and is a critical connection point between terrestrial and coastal ecosystems.
Taxa of vascular plants
Mediterranean monk seals remaining in Greece and Turkey
TENT supports the work of Archipelagos – environment and development in their efforts to study, understand and conserve the Mediterranean monk seal in Greece. To expand the population across their historic range, NGOs in their remaining habitats are working closely together. To this end, we also support CBD-Habitat Foundation’s effort to conserve monk seals in West Africa.