Kalamos Island biological field station



Official Member:

Information documents

Purpose of the station

Our goal is for the station to function as a base for volunteers working in our field volunteer program ,researchers and related field practitioners working in various projects in Kalamos and the surrounding marine and terrestrial region.It is also here to function as an educational and discussion center promoting awareness towards protection of ecosystems and the environment and in finding solutions to various related issues.It is also a point of hospitality for our ecotourist services guests wishing to enjoy the nature our region has.

Thematic areas where work is either done or could potentially be done

  • · Sustainable agriculture and agroforestry
  • · Forest ecosystem Restoration
  • · Restoration of agricultural diversity
  • · Restoration of marine ecosystems
  • · Sustainable fisheries management
  • · Anthropogenic impacts on marine and terrestrial ecosystems
  • · Anthropogenic pollution measurement and reduction
  • · Wildlife monitoring and management
  • · Ecosystem monitoring
  • · Land use rights
  • · Marine tenure
  • · The economics of sustainable development
  • · Rights of use of natural resources
  • · Biocontrol of introduced species
  • · Social justice and related issues in natural resource management and sustainable development
  • · Applied animal and plant biological conservation
  • · Modeling of biological populations
  • · Marine ecology
  • Plant ecology


Our biological field station is situated in Kalamos Island in Greece in the outskirts of the main village of the island called Kalamos. Kalamos Island is situated in the core of the second largest marine protected area in Greece and one of the largest in the Mediterranean, the inner Ionian Archipelago Natura 2000 conservation area .The area is an important biological conservation area and one of the last strongholds of the critically endangered Mediterranean monk seal. On land we have a wide variety of unspoiled habitats including agricultural land and native forest in various stages of regeneration.

Kalamos Island where the biological field station is located in Western Greece in relation to the inner Ionian archipelago Marine protected area (blue).


The station is housed in the same building as the offices of Terra Sylvestris. The current capacity of the station is up to 12 guests at any single point in time . There are two options for staying with us: either in a in a room of a total capacity of 12 beds or to camp in our camping site in the area of the field station which has a total capacity of 5 tents of 2 people.We have an agreement for access to further facilities of equal standards if the station itself cannot cater for you due to overcapacity at any point in time. People booking will be notified and given all relevant information about the space available in this case.

Living and work facilities

Two(2) spacious self catering kitchens are available for all guests at the station, high speed wireless internet ,three separate (3)toilet and shower facilities are available. Access to a laundry machine and an area for drying clothes is available at no extra fee.We have warm and cold water and electricity 24/7 . We also have computers that you can use.The field station also has an internal living room and sitting area.We also have a library that has an ever growing collection of ecology and environmental science books as well as other titles of general interest .A large external sitting area is available at the field station with a roof and hammocks.

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Selected photos of the biological field station facilities


We occasionally have produce from our own organic farm and donations from the community but on a daily basis residents at the station cater for themselves either individually or in groups agreed between themselves if the latter is the case.The village of Kalamos has many shops and local restaurants and caffes where food can be purchased.The nearby port town of Mytikas has additional markets, super markets , shops and restaurants. Daily ferry services to to and from Mytikas exist with a total trip of half hour one way. For large groups a catering service which can include one to three meals a day can be arranged . For more information on this option please contact us.


We have a dry biological laboratory for use in research and monitoring projects. This can cater up to 10 researchers at a time. Digital microscope and other related facilities such as refrigeration are available where several kinds of biological investigations such as botanical and insect identification can take place.


Marine protected area:The Inner Ionian archipelago marine protected area surrounds Kalamos from all sides, access to the edge of the area is by public road and cars are available for hire that can take you throughout most of the island.Boats are available for hire if you wish to conduct your own project beyond what you can access by land .Some of the marine protected area can also be access via land from the mainland also.

Terrestrial: Field work is practical to do in both Kalamos, Kastos the surrounding islands and a part of the mainland. In the islands we have direct access to several habitats both agricultural and non such as forest or scrub. We have lands that are our own (including our experimental vegetable and fruit farm around the field station where our crops range from mangoes to lemons and cabbage to tomato including trials of many different agricultural plant species and varieties and farming methods) and access to forest, scrub, grassland agricultural land that belong to other landowners with whom we have agreement with .

Selected photos of the field station experimental vegetable and fruit farm. Left: one of the vegetable gardens, right: mango tree trial at its third year since planting

*PLEASE NOTE: Some activities require a government licence in addition to land owner authorization in the case of land based projects, that neither us or you may have and need to be issued first prior to conducting any activities.If you are interested to explore this option please contact us to discuss further on this. All field volunteers working in our pre-arranged activities dont pay for transport expenses.

Administration and Staff

The station director is Ted Karfakis (Bsc, Msc, PhD), an ecologist with many years of experience working in the field of biological conservation, ecology and related issues worldwide.The station is also permanently staffed by a regular team composed of another member of the organization and local volunteers . We speak Greek, English, Spanish and Portuguese.

Sellection of international literature pieces

Karfakis T & Karfaki G.N. (2018) Setting priorities for addressing community historical rights and conserving biodiversity in the Inner Ionian Marine Protected Area,Greece, Biodiversity DOI: 10.1080/14888386.2018.1478750 (article can be downloaded at the top of this page in english)

Karfakis, T.(2015).Closing a gap in ecology and biodiversity conservation: the case of Kalamos island biological field station in the Northern Ionian, Greece. 17th Hellenic Forestry Conference ,Argostoli, Kefalonia ,October 4th-7th :925-934 (Poster and article can be downloaded at the top of this page,article is in Greek with abstract in English)

Karfakis T.(2015).The Kalamos and Kastos islands sustainable development project: A private conservation initiative in the heart of the inner Ionian Marine protected area ,Greece. Peer reviewed Proceedings of the International Symposium ‘Marine Protected Areas in Greece and the Mediterranean: Designing for the Future by Applying Lessons Learnt from the Past’ Management Agency of the National Marine Park of Zakynthos.(poster and article at the top of this page)

Year 2019 Fee table for external projects and visitors

*Varies from project to project and therefore subject to independent individual agreement for outside projects. Researchers and field practitioners are subject to the same terms and conditions of stay and work as field volunteers .An outside researcher or field practitioner is deemed to be a field volunteer with us in the sense that we agreed on work we feel should take place with our support and we are co-responsible. Have a look at our field volunteer program for more and for applying to do your work.

** A catering service is available at an additional cost for large groups (3 people or more), please contact us for further details

# Ecotourists guests receive full continental breakfast , 24/7 reception ,free tourist information facility and an ecotour booking facility instead of support

For more information with respect to the field station, please see the information guide at the top of this page