Kersting, Diego

Kersting, Diego

Ramón y Cajal (CSIC)

Diego K. Kersting is a Juan de la Cierva-Incoporación researcher at the Departament de Biologia Evolutiva, Ecologia i Ciències Ambientals of the Universitat de Barcelona. His research is focused on vulnerable species and habitats, global change impacts on marine ecosystems, and the role of MPAs as sentinel sites and laboratories to better understand responses and recovery processes. Diego established and runs several long-term monitorings (>20 yr) in the Columbretes Islands MPA (NW Mediterranean), including water temperature and warming impacts on corals, which are acknowledged among the longest of their kind in the Mediterranean Sea. This information is allowing to describe the long-term responses of benthic organisms to anthropogenic warming. In addition, these data series conform a unique calibration dataset to undertake environmental and ecological paleorreconstructions using coral skeletons, another of Diego’s interests, which are allowing to contextualize current changes beyond observational and instrumental data. Before joining the Universitat de Barcelona, Diego worked as a researcher at the Section of Paleontology of the Freie Universität Berlin, as free-lance scientific consultant and as scientific coordinator of the Columbretes Islands MPA.

Selected articles:

  • Kersting DK, Linares C (2019) Living evidence of a fossil survival strategy raises hope for warming-affected corals. Science Advances 5:eaax2950.
  • Kersting DK, García-March JR (2017) Long-term assessment of recruitment, early stages and population dynamics of the endangered Mediterranean fan mussel Pinna nobilis in the Columbretes Islands (NW Mediterranean). Marine Environmental Research 130:282-292.
  • Kersting DK (2015) Cambio climático en el medio marino español: impactos, vulnerabilidad y adaptación. Oficina Española de Cambio Climático, OECC, Ministerio de Agricultura, Alimentación y Medio Ambiente, Madrid.
  • Linares C, Vidal M, Canals M, Kersting DK, Amblas D, Aspillaga E, Cebrian E, Delgado-Huertas A, Díaz D, Garrabou J, Hereu B, Navarro L, Teixidó N, Ballesteros E (2015) Persistent natural acidification drives major distribution shifts in marine benthic ecosystems. Proceedings of the Royal Society B, Biological Sciences 282:20150587.
  • Kersting DK, Cebrian E, Casado C, Teixidó N, Garrabou J, Linares C (2015) Experimental evidence of the synergistic effects of warming and invasive algae on a temperate reef-builder coral. Scientific Reports 5:18635.
  • Kersting DK, Teixidó N, Linares C (2014) Recruitment and mortality of the temperate coral Cladocora caespitosa: implications for the recovery of endangered populations. Coral Reefs 33: 403-407.
  • Kersting DK, Ballesteros E, De Caralt S, Linares C (2014) Invasive macrophytes in a marine reserve (Columbretes Islands, NW Mediterranean): spread dynamics and interactions with the endemic scleractinian coral Cladocora caespitosa. Biological Invasions 16: 1599-1610.
  • Kersting DK, Casado C, López-Legentil S, Linares C (2013) Unexpected patterns in the sexual reproduction of the Mediterranean scleractinian coral Cladocora caespitosa. Marine Ecology Progress Series 486: 165-171.
  • Kersting DK, Bensoussan N, Linares C (2013) Long-term responses of the endemic reef-builder Cladocora caespitosa to Mediterranean warming. Plos ONE 8: e70820.
  • Garrabou J et al. (Kersting DK among authors) (2009) Mass mortalities in Northwestern Mediterranean rocky benthic communities: effects of the 2003 heat wave. Global Change Biology 15: 1090-1103.


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