Welcome to the homepage of the PRIDE programme. From 2015 until 2019 we will investigate the evolution and demise of lakes systems and biota in the Black Sea, Caspian Sea and surroundings.

The programme combines climate-, geo- and bio- sciences and is conducted by 15 Early Stage Researchers. The PRIDE network contains 21 partipating institutes. Here you can find the background of the programme, you can explore workpackages here (WP1, WP2, WP3, WP4) and here are the 15 projects outlined.

If you have any question? Please contact us here.

Discover the unique mollusk fauna of the Black Sea - Identification sheet

Available in four languages
- pdf - English
- pdf - Ukrainian
- pdf - Romanian
- pdf - Russian

PRIDE proudly presents the identfication sheet to the most characteristic mollusk species of the Black Sea. We invite everybody to participate in the PRIDE project by uploading observations to the iNaturalist portal. 

We want to:

  • raise awareness of the uniqueness of Pontocaspian biodiversity and the current biodiversity crisis and
  • collect data on mollusk species in Northern Black Sea through the joint efforts of citizen scientists.

This will help us update our appearance/distribution maps on our taxonomic platform: PC-Tax ( whereupon we will be able to identify the areas of follow up action.

Pontocaspian Information System PC-IS

This is the link to PC-IS, the Pontocaspian Information system. This system contains information on the occurrence of the threatened Pontocaspian molluscs in the Black Sea region, that we have been assembling as part of PRIDE. Furthermore it contains information on climate and anthropogenic pressure in the Caspian Sea - Black Sea region. And it contains information on the organisations in Ukraine that are involved in Pontocaspian biodiversity conservation and conservation planning.


PRIDE data - explore Pontocaspian biodiversity in the Pontocaspian Taxonomic Information Platform PC-TAX 

PC-Tax is the Pontocaspian taxonomic information platform that targets so-called Pontocaspian biota. These biota are a unique flora and fauna that evolved in mostly brackish lake systems in and around the Caspian Sea, Black Sea and adjacent lakes in the past few million years.

Article published by Anouk D'Hont

Anouk D'Hont, PRIDE researcher, has published an article: Drivers of dominance shifts between invasive Ponto-Caspian dreissenids Dreissena polymorpha (Pallas, 1771) and Dreissena rostriformis bugensis (Andrusov, 1897)Anouk D’Hont, Adriaan Gittenberger, A. Jan Hendriks and Rob S.E.W. Leuven, Aquatic invasions 2018 issue 4

Sabrina van de Velde defended her PhD-thesis

We are super proud of Naturalis PRIDE researcher Sabrina van de Velde who succesfully defended her PhD-thesis on 2 October 2020 at Utrecht University. Congratulations, Sabrina!!

Liesbeth Jorissen defended her PhD thesis

We are super proud of PRIDE researcher Liesbeth Jorissen who succesfully defended her PhD-thesis on 2 October 2020 at Utrecht University, with Prof. Wout Krijgsman as promotor. Congratulations, Liesbeth!!

Arthur Francis Sands defended his PhD-thesis

We are super proud of our PRIDE researcher Arthur Francis Sands who defended his PhD-thesis on 23 July 2020 at the JL Giessen Universitat, with prof. Tom Wilke as promotor. Congratulations, Arthur, and good luck!!

Sergei Lazarev defended his thesis

We are super proud of our PRIDE researcher Sergei Lazarev who defended his thesis on 10 July 2020 at the University of Utrecht. The title of the thesis: From the Eastern Paratethys to the Pontocaspian basins: late Miocene–Middle Pleistocene magneto-biostratigraphy, sedimentary architecture and faunal turnovers of the shrinking basins of West Eurasia. Promotor: prof. Wout Krijgsman. Congratulations, Sergei, and good luck!!

Arthur Sands publishes article

Old lake versus young taxa: a comparative phylogeographic perspective on the evolution of Caspian Sea gastropods (Neritidae: Theodoxus)