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Lab members

Gil Rilov

Prof. Gil Rilov

Senior Researcher, Head of Lab


My research explores the patterns, dynamics and processes that shape marine communities, especially rocky shores and subtidal reefs.  I am interested in the structure of communities and what affects their diversity, including larval recruitment, species interactions (predator-prey, competition, facilitation), overfishing, bioinvasions, climate change. I also study how marine communities function and what ecosystem services they provide. I am investigation nature base solution designed to protect these fascinating communities, their functions and services (including Blue Carbon) through, for example marine protected areas. ​So far, I have been fortunate to conduct research on the shores of Israel (Mediterranean and Red Sea), the USA, New Zealand, Brazil, Chile and South Africa, Crete, Cyprus and Italy (Ischia). I have worked on rocky shores, subtidal reefs, coral reefs and seagrass.


I am also a Professor in the Marine Biology Department in the Leon H. Charney School of Marine Sciences at the University of Haifa.  I teach there a marine ecology course. 


Research Assistants


Guy Raanan

Lab Manager

Main responsibilities: Operation and maintenance of experimental facilities:  benthocosm, temperature and acidification microcosms and the tidalcosom.  Execution of the subtidal diving surveys. Processing of photoquadrats


B.Sc- Marine Biology, Ruppin Academic Center.

M.Sc- Analysis of Late Cretaceous Tsunami event deposits, The Dr. Moses Strauss Department of Marine Geosciences, University of Haifa.   


Shai Zilberman

Lab Technician

Managing the national intertidal biodiversity monitoring and database along the Israeli coast. involved in conducting experiments for research concerning climate change, ecosystem functions, and biodiversity community structure for native and invasive organisms , all while gaining a better understanding of the Mediterranean rocky reef ecosystem by utilizing advanced data approach research.

B.Sc - Biology and Earth Sciences ,Hebrew University

M.Sc- Biology, Bar-Ilan University.


Yuval Sonego

Lab Technician

Since I  was child I had always had a great love and curiosity for the mysteries of the ocean. 

Here im focusing  on the canopy forming algae  Gongolaria ,and the interactions between the various ecological communities. 

B.Sc- Marine Biology, Ruppin Academic Center.

Current Students


Iris Preiss 

Ph.D. candidate 


The current climate change, the resulting rapid warming of seawater and increase in extreme weather events influence dramatically the composition and functioning of species of intertidal, and subtidal rocky shore communities. Within the context of a large European project, FutureMARES, I will study the vulnerability, resilience and adaption of these ecosystems to warming at local and regional scales, focusing on sea urchins, intertidal gastropods, and algae using ecological and molecular methods. This knowledge would serve as input for advanced ecological models assessing the current and future status of eastern Mediterranean costal ecosystems compared to those in the western Mediterranean and the European Atlantic. The results will be use to inform management and to develop nature-based solutions within the FutureMARES context. 


Co-supervisor: Prof. Ilana Berman-Frank, Marine Biology, Haifa University 


B.Sc. – Life Sciences, Tel Aviv University  

M.Sc. - Life Sciences, Zoology, Tel Aviv University

Khristina Ermak

M.Sc. candidate


My master's research focuses on interactions between two closely related species of Cerithium sea snails. In the context of climate change and growing bioinvasions, I want to compare the seasonal dynamics of the Cerithium populations in the field (abundance and size distribution) and compare thermal performance of the invasive and native Cerithium species to observe  their adaptations to different temperature conditions.



Alhassan Mukaila

M.Sc. candidate


My previous academic and research experiences have predominantly been in the fields of biotechnology and microbiology, I am eager to explore new avenues for my graduate studies and contribute to research in marine ecology. I find investigating the impact of climate change and local stressors on marine biodiversity to be an incredibly fascinating area of research. As part of the ACTNOW project, a European initiative aimed at understanding and predicting the effects of multiple drivers on marine biodiversity, my research will focus on conducting a multi-parameter approach study. This study will assess the ecological resilience of Mediterranean intertidal organisms, specifically mussels and topshells, to seasonal and sewage pollution. This interdisciplinary research will employ ecological, chemical, and molecular methods. The outcome of this work aims to provide evidence-based management strategies for mitigating the impacts of sewage pollution on Mediterranean intertidal ecosystems, safeguarding the health and resilience of these environments and the organisms within them.


BSc. - Biotechnology and Molecular Biology, University for Development Studies



Elena Bogdanova

M.Sc. candidate

Master student in Marine Biology Department, Leon Charney School of Marine sciences, University of Haifa. Main research interest: reef ecology, 3D models, conservation 

Erez Yeruham

Ph.D. Candidate


My PhD project deals with the physiological mechanisms behind range distribution shifts of herbivorous fish, as a result of climate change.


Co-supervisor Dr. Daniel Chernov (University of Haifa)


B.Sc- Marine Biology , Ruppin Academic Center.

M.Sc- Zoology, Tel Aviv University.


Neta-Ly Lipkin

M.Sc. candidate

Neta-Ly, a bachelor’s in marine biotechnology from Ruppin academic center, was always curious about the great mysteries of the ocean and since she was a teenager integrated diving as a part of her life. My  research concentrates on the Spatial-temporal plasticity of the native seagrass Halophila stipulacea under changing environment, regarding its responses to contemporary and future environmental trends.  H.stipulacea is particularly interesting as it is the only seagrass species to migrate from the Indian ocean and establish itself in the Caribbean 


Co-supervisor Dr. Gidon Winters (DSASC)


B.Sc- Marine Biology , Ruppin Academic Center.

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