What is LIFE+ CUBOMED project?

"Development and demonstration of eradication and control methods for an invasive species: Carybdea marsupialis (Cubozoa), Mediterranean"

The LIFE+ CUBOMED project (LIFE08 NAT ES 0064) was developed due to the need of study and understand the causes that produced the presence of large proliferations of Carybdea marsupialis (Cnidaria: Cubozoa) in different beaches located in Denia (Alicante) during summer 2008, which was unusual in our coasts until then. 

Nowadays there is no data base about the sightings of this species that could exactly determine the range distribution of this box jellyfish. The species was detected for the first time in the Mediterranean region by Claus in 1878 (Di Camilo et al., 2006). At the end of the 20th century, Carybdea marsupialis was observed in different locations: central Adriatic, near Fano in 1985; gulf of Venice during summer 1992 (Mizzan, 1993); gulf of Trieste in october 1998 (Bettoso, 2002); different localities along the Emilia Romagna (ARPA, 2001, 2004) and in Riviera de Conero (Ancona), also in the Adriatic Sea.  

This cubomedusa has been detected in the SE of the spanish coast, near Alicante, and some specimens in northern locations such as Sitges and l'Ampolla. Although this sightings, such high densities of Carybdea marsupialis as those observed in Denia during summer 2008 were never observed before in Spain. 

One of the main objectives of CUBOMED is to develop a method and technique for the detection and quantification of Carybdea marsupialis in order to find some solutions to reduce the population of box jellyfish and their growth rate, and also clarify what are the environmental and ecological parameters that could enhance the populations of cubomedusa to grow. The study of the consequences for the coastal environments of those massive proliferations is also an objective of this project. 

The main area of study of the CUBOMED project is the coast of Denia and two adjacent localities: Oliva and Denia. Moreover, some actions of the study are developed along de Mediterranean Spanish coast, such as the jellywatch network for the detection of Carybdea marsupialis and other gelatinous organisms in our coast.

"CUBOMED" is the name used for identifying the project LIFE 08 NAT/E/000064, which has a complete title: Development and eradication demonstration and control methods for an invasive species: Carybdea marsupialis (Cubozoa), Mediterranean.


Duration: 72 months

Start : 01/01/2010  

End :   31/12/2015



- European Commission (LIFE+ Program) : 48.33%

- Ministerio de Medio Ambiente, y Medio Rural y Marino (DG Sostenibilidad de la Costa y del Mar: 44%

- Conselleria de Medio Ambiente de la Generalitat Valenciana: 6%  

In addition to the dedication of the staff and nonprofit use of the Universidad de Alicante and Instituto de Ciencias del Mar – CSIC facilities. 


Beneficiary Institutions:

Coordinator: Instituto de Ciencias del Mar de Barcelona. Consejo Superior de Investigaciones Científicas.

Beneficiary associated: Instituto Multidisciplinar para el Estudio del Medio "Ramon Margalef"