the team

Nicholas Barbara 
Project Manager

When Nicholas first started working for BirdLife Malta it was as the Project Manager for the EU LIFE Yelkouan Shearwater Project. Now Nicholas is BirdLife Malta’s Conservation Manager, with responsibility for coordinating all BirdLife Malta’s conservation projects, including the LIFE+ Malta Seabird Project, which builds on the achievements of the Yelkouan Project.
Tel: (+356)21347646 Email:

Dr Benjamin Metzger Head Researcher

Benjamin joined the LIFE+ Malta Seabird Team at the start of the project in December 2011. As Head of Research, Benjamin is responsible for conducting and supervising research on the three seabird species of the LIFE+ project, as well as coordinating the research team of the project.

Benjamin is trialling of new and innovative technology, that will help the project identify the habitat use and spatial and temporal distribution patterns of the three species of tubenoses in Maltese waters, while continuing on the legacy of research and monitoring of the various seabird colonies in Gozo, Filfla, Malta and Comino..
Tel:  (+356)21347646 Email:

Paulo Lago Barreiro   Field Research Assistant

Paulo joins the Seabird team this year as a Field Research Assistant. During 2012 – 2013 he was volunteering for BirdLife Malta as an EVS assistant, working mainly in illegal hunting and trapping issues in the conservation department. During this time, he became interested in the seabird project and volunteered in the boat based observations, land based observations as well as field work in the colonies. This year he finally has the opportunity to join the team full time. He is specialist in protected areas and was previously working in forestation, restoration and alien species projects around Spain.

Ilaria Murgia  Research Intern

Ilaria joined BirdLife Malta as an intern, working in the Malta Seabird Project as a Field Assistant and in the conservation department. Ilaria holds a Msc in Ecology and Evolution from the University of Rome ‘Tor Vergata’ and a specialization in impact assessment environmental planning. She became first involved with BirdLife Malta as a volunteer in the spring and autumn camps and then had the opportunity to do an internship within the Leonardo da Vinci programme. She’s strongly interested in bird conservation and has other volunteering experiences in Italy and Germany where she monitored waders and seabirds and assisted with the bird ringing.

John J.Borg  Field Researcher and Consultant

John is the Senior Curator of the National Museum of Natural History, Mdina. His research interests are ecology and breeding biology of Mediterranean Procellariiformes, on which he has researched and published work over the past 30 years.. John has been conducting local and involved in foreign research projects on tubensoses for the past 30 years.

Gianmarco Santirocco Financial Officer

Gianmarco started as the Birdlife Financial Officer in October 2013, he also has the role of Project Administrator on the LIFE+ projects and Internal Mentor for the European Voluntary Service (EVS) Interns.

Gianmarco studied a B.Com.(Hons) in Accountancy  in the Italian FEMA faculty of the University of Macerata, Italy. The following 3 years was spent in the practice, he then qualified in 2013 as “Dottore Commercialista” (Certified Public Accountant) and Auditor (Practicing Certificate in Auditing) in Italy, soon to have the equivilant qualifications in Malta. Gianmarco worked for Perkin Elmer Plc. in Monza (Italy) and for Best Imports Ltd in London (UK). In Malta he worked first for Ascot Ltd and Untours Insurance as Operations Manager and Senior Accountant, before joining BirdLife Malta.

Ana Meirinho Geographic Information Systems Expert

Ana works in GIS, at SPEA, the Portuguese partner of the LIFE Project. She is responsible for the GIS information of the project and the compilation of all the project data in a GIS database. Data include information collected from boat-based surveys, land-based observations, telemetry work and oceanographic, biological and fisheries data collected for modelling purposes.

Iván Ramírez Head of Conservation for Europe & C.Asia

Iván joined BirdLife in 2001 and has worked at the British, Portuguese and European Offices of BirdLife.

As part of his previous role in SPEA (BirdLife Portugal) Iván participated in BirdLife Malta’s first marine Project and later helped during the writing of the current LIFE proposal. Iván participates at both the Scientific and Executive meetings and tries to ensure smooth coordination in between this project and those developed by other BirdLife partners. He also tries to ensure project’s deliverables reach key audiences, with an special attention to EU institutions.

Elizabeth Ball International Project Officer

Elizabeth coordinates the RSPB’s scientific and technical input into LIFE+ projects in Bulgaria, Greece and Malta, including the Malta Seabird Project. She is also responsible for project development and coordination in Turkmenistan.


Logos for Seabird

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s