Miguel Pessanha Pais

Hi! I'm Miguel!


Welcome to my website.


I am a postdoctoral researcher with a PhD in Marine Biology and I work in Lisbon, Portugal.

My research focuses on applied marine ecology and environmental management, particularly with coastal fish assemblages.


Research interests include fish ecology, environmental monitoring and assessment methodology, functional traits and indicators and individual-based models.

My institution:

Marine and Environmental Sciences Centre

I have a degree in Marine Environmental Biology, MSc in Ecology and Environmental Management and a PhD in Marine Biology.


My research so far was mostly focused on ways of assessing fish community health to support conservation decisions and international policy requirements. Having acquired experience on coastal fish assemblage surveys, using underwater visual census and fishing gears, I am fascinated by the way we, as mere observers, percieve the reality hidden below sea level.
I have studied ways of reducing or predicting the effect of natural variability on survey results, as well as maximising their power to detect changes. One striking conclusion of my PhD research was the difficulty of predicting which fish should be at a particular site given the state of the system. This made me want to explore individual-based models as a tool to seek answers for some of these issues.


I am allways looking for productive collaborations and healthy discussions, so feel free to contact me!

My published work focuses on applied marine ecology, particularly on coastal fish assemblages. Studies include the application of indicators using a functional approach, assessment methodology and definition of assemblage types.

I have recently ventured into the world of individual-based models. In these models, community and population effects emerge from individual interactions. Click this image to go to the models section, or use the top menu.

Photography, both under and over water, is one of my favourite hobbies. Check out some of my photos by clicking this image or going to the photography section in the top menu.