Meinesz was born on April 12, 1946, at Cagnes-sur-Mer
(Alpes-Maritimes) France. Since 1989, Meinesz has been
a professor of Biology and Director of the Marine Coastal
Ecology (Littoral Environment) Laboratory at the University
of Nice - Sophia Antipolis. Meinesz obtained his Ph.
D. in Phycology (the study of algae) from the University
of Paris VI in 1980.
is a professional diver who has performed more than
3000 dives since 1967 in the Mediterranean Sea, the
Pacific Ocean, the Red Sea, the Persian Gulf, and the
Atlantic Ocean. He is also an Aquanaut who has visited
the NOAA underwater house, "Hydrolab" in the Virgin
Islands. A Captian (Lieutenant de Vaisseau) in the french
has performed 18 dives in the pocket submarine "Griffon."
is the author of 160 scientific publications about Seagrasses,
Algae and Caulerpa, introduced species, mapping,
survey and monitoring systems for littoral underwater
ecosystems and impacts of construction on the sea floor.
links to this scientist's home page and other related information
please see our resources
Bonsoir M. Meinesz- Has the French/Euro government given
you permission to try the Florida slugs on the invasive
weed? How have the lab tests proceeded? Finalement, how
many years do you predict it will take the slugs to eradicate
the aquarium plant?
Merci pour votre reponse.
No, the French and other governments have no interest
in our slugs. Regarding our recent scientific publications
on this biological agent versus Caulerpa taxifolia,
we hope that next year we can organize a meeting with
a number of international experts under the auspices
of the French Environmental Agency. This is to allow
the first experiments in the open sea with the cold
intolerant slugs from Martinique. In the same year,
we also hope to collaborate with the University of Florida
to catch and study other, more cold tolerant populations
of Elysia subornata. We have still a little hope that
the slug will significantly reduce the alga!
Merci pour votre bonne question!
Are there more pictures online of the Caulerpa
weed and slug that eats it?
Daničle (Nice French name!) Try http://www.caulerpa.org
where there are about 60 pictures of Caulerpa.
We must get more of the slugs !
there any definitive books about the Caulerpa taxifolia
crisis in the Mediterranean Sea?
Yes, I wrote a book called "The Killer Alga" in which
the whole story of the crisis is described! Editor is
Chicago University Press. Enjoy the book!
you have any leads to a solution for the algae problem
in San Diego? If So, would this help the Mediterranean?
Malarie (this is an uncommon first name in France, but
I think it sounds very nice!)
I think that in San Diego, the local authorities do
their best to control the Caulerpa. They use
chlorine. This was also proposed by a company in France
in 1992. but it was forbidden by the French Agency of
the Sea (IFREMER). Now, it seems to be working at San
Diego. I'll be visiting San Diego at the end of January
for an international meeting. I hope to learn about
their control methods . I think it can also work in
France to prevent colonization of other underwater sites.
All the best
Paul B asks:
the Caulepra is growing in international waters,
could you release the slug with out permission from
any government? Since the slug is highly specialized
to eat only Caulerpa, won't they just starve
to death when the food supply is gone, ending any threat
they might have posed to the environment? How many slugs
would it take and how long before they would actually
start making a sizeable dent in the Caulerpa
Paul, this is a good question ! You are right, if we
release the slug in France, it will very quickly find
its way to other countries! So, it must be an international
decision to put it even in French waters. Yes absolutely:
since the slug is highly specialized to eat only Caulerpa,
the slugs just starve to death when the food supply
is gone, ending any threat they might have posed to
the environment. They can survive about 30 days without
any Caulerpa using the chloroplasts stored under
their skin, which provide enough energy and sugar to
last the slug for one month! (This is kleptoplasty and
endosymbiosis of chloroplasts).
estimate that releasing a few hundreds in early spring
would be enough to control a population of Caulerpa
in a bay of some hectares. These results can be observed
in early autumn, when the population of snails would
be in the third generation (each lays 400 eggs/week
and the babies reproduce after 2 months!). All the best