Saint-Nicolas-de-Port, France


Saint-Nicolas-de-Port, France
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Vincent C.,CNRS Chizé Center for Biological Studies | Huon M.,CNRS Chizé Center for Biological Studies | Caurant F.,CNRS Chizé Center for Biological Studies | Dabin W.,University of La Rochelle | And 16 more authors.
Deep-Sea Research Part II: Topical Studies in Oceanography | Year: 2017

Grey (Halichoerus grypus) and harbour seals (Phoca vitulina) are sympatric seal species, but they display distinct strategies of habitat use and connectivity between haulout sites. The distribution patterns and variations in relative abundance of both species were investigated along the French coast of the English Channel, at the southern limit of their range where seal numbers are increasing. Regular censuses conducted at all main haulout sites in mainland France showed significant seasonal variations at most sites, with more harbour seals counted during summer (breeding and moulting seasons), and more grey seals during summer only in the eastern English Channel. Trends in maximum haulout numbers at haulout sites showed a significant increase over the last five years, ranging from 9.7% to 30.9% per year for harbour seals, and from 5.8% (in the western English Channel) to 49.2% (in the eastern English Channel) per year for grey seals. These rates of increase in grey seal numbers are not linked to local pup production and most probably result from seal movements from the southwest British Isles and the North Sea, respectively. Aerial surveys conducted across the English Channel showed that most seal observations at sea were concentrated in the north-eastern English Channel. Telemetry showed that the 28 harbour seals tracked remained highly coastal, within a radius of 100. km from their haulout sites, and did not move to other known colonies. Grey seals moved much greater distances, reaching up to 1200. km from their capture site. More than half of the 45 grey seals tracked crossed the English Channel, especially during the breeding season, moving to known colonies in the southwest British Isles and the North Sea. Combining individual tracks and long-term surveys of the seal populations allowed a better understanding of the dynamics of these populations and their connectivity at a larger regional scale. The findings provide direct information for the management of grey and harbour seals within the frame of the Marine Strategy Framework Directive, and highlight focus areas where potential interactions between the two species should be monitored. © 2017 Elsevier Ltd.

Osinga R.,Wageningen University | Schutter M.,Wageningen University | Wijgerde T.,Wageningen University | Rinkevich B.,National Institute of Oceanography of Israel | And 23 more authors.
Journal of the Marine Biological Association of the United Kingdom | Year: 2012

In order to improve the methodology for growing and maintaining corals in captivity, a consortium of European zoos, aquaria and academia executed a four-year public/private collaborative research and innovation project (CORALZOO) on the breeding and husbandry of stony corals. CORALZOO comprised the following topics: (1) sexual and asexual breeding of corals in captivity, including techniques for propagation, feeding and induction of natural coral colony morphogenesis; and (2) coral husbandry: development of generic bioassays to evaluate biotic and abiotic husbandry parameters and to monitor coral health, elaboration of methods for identification and treatment of coral diseases and optimization of transport and acclimation procedures. The results of this project are reviewed. Copyright © Marine Biological Association of the United Kingdom 2012.

Jung J.-L.,University of Western Brittany | Simon G.,University of Western Brittany | Alfonsi E.,University of Western Brittany | Thoraval D.,French National Center for Scientific Research | And 4 more authors.
PLoS ONE | Year: 2017

Cetacean adipose tissues contain an extremely very wide variety of acyl-chains present in triacylglycerols and / or wax esters. In addition, changes in the lipid composition across organs suggest fine stratification. It therefore remains technically challenging to describe precisely the lipid organization of these tissues. In the present study, we used in parallel HR-MAS NMR (High Resolution Magic Angle Spinning Nuclear Magnetic Resonance) and GC (gas-chromatography) to characterize and quantify the lipids and fatty acyl-chains from the blubber and melon of two odontocete species. Both methods generated very similar compositions, but each presented clear advantages. While GC underestimated the amount of short branched fatty acyl-chains, which are specific to cetacean adipose tissues and most probably of primary importance for their functioning, HR-MAS NMR allowed for their exact quantification. Conversely, when HR-MAS NMR could only discriminate a few types of fatty acyl-chain families, GC unambiguously identified and quantified most of them. In addition, this technique allowed for the determination of the wax esters molecular species. Our results further suggest that the stratification of these adipose tissues relies on changes in the tria-cylglycerol to wax ester ratio and in the fatty acyl composition of triacylglycerols, but not on changes in the wax esters composition. Altogether, our data show that the complementarities of these two approaches result in lipid analyses of unprecedented precision, paving the way for the detailed description of the fatty acyl composition of cetacean adipose tissues and the understanding of their functioning. © 2017 Jung et al. This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.

Monitoring the environment with non intrusive acoustic techniques is the subject of many research initiatives worldwide. In the framework of the scientific interest group "Europôle Mer (GIS-EM)", ENSIETA, SHOM and Océanopolis co-organized the SERENADE workshop in Brest. This workshop has enabled to provide a state of the art in the field of acoustic monitoring of marine environment, to share the points of view from various scientific communities and to identify prospects for collaborations in the next future.

Shillito B.,Paris-Sorbonne University | Shillito B.,French National Center for Scientific Research | Ravaux J.,Paris-Sorbonne University | Ravaux J.,French National Center for Scientific Research | And 5 more authors.
Deep-Sea Research Part II: Topical Studies in Oceanography | Year: 2015

The AbyssBox project aims to provide the first permanent public exhibition of live deep-sea hydrothermal fauna maintained at in situ pressure. AbyssBox is a pressurized aquarium designed to function permanently. Here we present details of the project after the public exhibition functioned for more than three years at Océanopolis aquarium in Brest, France. We also describe the AbyssBox pressure aquarium, and provide data and observations on vent shrimp (Mirocaris fortunata) and crabs (Segonzacia mesatlantica) that were sampled from 1700. m depth at the Lucky Strike vent field (Mid-Atlantic Ridge) during different cruises. While mortalities exceeded 50% during the first days following sampling, the remaining animals appeared to acclimate fairly well. Some crabs have now been kept for more than 2 years, and some shrimp have spent more than 3 years in captivity. Primarily designed for a public exhibition, the AbyssBox is already used for scientific purposes, since it provides one of the most effective tools for long-term rearing of deep-sea fauna. AbyssBox is a first step towards maintaining a variety of deep-sea fauna year-round at in situ pressure, which will serve both scientific and public interests. © 2015.

Gerval J.-P.,Institute Superieur Of Lelectronique Et Du Numerique | Le Ru Y.,Institute Superieur Of Lelectronique Et Du Numerique | Ghiron S.,Oceanopolis
Frontiers in Artificial Intelligence and Applications | Year: 2014

This paper sets out a software development targeting the design of pedagogical content to be run on SmartPhones. The result is an authoring tool that does not require any software development skill. Teachers can set up easily and quickly content for their students. Experiments took place last year in a Marine Park where more than 200 contents had been developed. It is a web-based system. Server and database implement Linux, Apache, MySQL and PHP. This architecture has come to be known simply as LAMP. On SmartPhone side, HTML5 and JavaScript technologies enable us to target all kind of devices. © 2014 The authors and IOS Press. All rights reserved.

News Article | December 9, 2016
Site: phys.org

The otters, an endangered species hunted to near extinction because of their highly prized fur, are native to the shallow coastal waters of the north Pacific. The two males, named Matchaq and Tangiq, looked relieved to take a cool bath in a quarantine centre in France after spending 15 hours aboard a private jet chartered specially for the journey. They will go on show at the Oceanopolis sea life centre in the city of Brest in northwest France, which brought another three sea otters to France last June from Alaska. Only one of them has survived. Their transfer from the SeaLife Center in Alaska was part of a conservation effort for sea otters that have been cared for in captivity and cannot be released into the wild. The mammal is still considered endangered, even though a hunting ban has helped their numbers rebound to an estimated 126,000 worldwide, according to the International Union for Conservation of Nature. Thanks to their thick fur, the voracious eaters are able to spend much of their lives in the water preying on crustaceans and small fish—while trying to avoid hungry killer whales.

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