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Ecology and Conservation of Marine Mammals 
University of La Rochelle

Conference 2008


(limited access)


Monitoring Strategies for Marine Mammal Populations,

La Rochelle, 21-23 November 2008

10th annual seminar of CRMM field correspondents

Co-organized with
And supported by

The 10th seminar of CRMM field correspondents aims to gather stakeholders, scientists and field biologists to discuss, for the first time at a European scale, issues relating to Monitoring Strategies for Marine Mammal Populations.

In most European countries, marine mammals are protected under national, European and international legal mechanisms (national environmental laws, Habitat Directive, Common Fishery Policy, regional agreements such as ASCOBANS and ACCOBAMS, International Convention on Whaling). Nevertheless, indicators proposed to assess the state of marine mammal populations are only defined in very general terms, with essentially two criteria that are fairly easy to express but difficult to document: abundance and distribution.  Approaches used by European Countries to describe abundance and distribution include dedicated surveys, acoustic monitoring, use of platforms of opportunity and stranding schemes. Each of these approaches has a different usefulness in monitoring, but their values have not been assessed at a European scale.

As a consequence, in order to develop strategies for monitoring marine mammal populations in Europe, it is necessary to compare available methodologies and assess the performance of the many possible indicators both in terms of their capacity to detect changes in marine mammal populations sufficiently early and in terms of their costs and benefits.

 The “state of a marine mammal population” covers a number of concepts and is often used without a clear definition. Concepts include:

Conservation status: this concept usually uses comparisons of current abundance and distribution data with a supposedly undisturbed initial situation where populations would be in equilibrium with their habitats and resources.

Demographic status: this is used to describe fecundity and mortality parameters which may lead to changes in abundance and distribution.

Health status: often describes the main pathologies and causes of death, including nutritional state and contamination by pollutants, all being processes that determine reproduction and survival of individuals.

Conservation status is the ultimate criteria allowing one to state that a population has changed. However, demographic and health statuses of a population are also of considerable use for management purposes as they permit on-going processes to be identified before they have fully expressed their effects on population abundance and distribution.  This allows relevant management decisions to be taken earlier.

 Early decision-making is particularly relevant for marine mammals since, because of their low fecundity, they may recover slowly from adverse conditions.

 Expected participants include those responsible for monitoring and conservation policies for marine mammal populations and habitats at national, European and international levels; research scientists in biology and conservation of marine mammals and field biologists who collect, compile or synthesize relevant data. Facilitating contacts between these different spheres is integral part of the goals of the symposium.


Pre registration is not possible any more. You can register onsite.

Find the scientific programme and social events


Travelling to and find accommodations and restaurants in La Rochelle


Prepare your travel : Facilities

Online r
egistration and abstract submission are now closed. You can register onsite but PLEASE, send us an email so that we can book a lunch for you...
For contact & others informations : conference2008@univ-lr.fr

Download the announcement poster : anouncement.pdf 


Conference Site 
The symposium will be held at  Forum des Pertuis. This conference center is located in front of the Atlantic ocean on "Les Minimes" harbour. 
On site registration (cash only) will take place on Thursday 20th April from 17h00 to 19h00 and Friday morning 21th, from 8h00.
Online registration is strongly encouraged.

Preferential fees are offered to online registration. Deadline for online registration is 30th October 2008. On site registation is limited to cash payments.
The conference fees include all plenary sessions, public evening, ice-breaker and three lunches. Banquet is optional.

Full preferential fees   Reduced preferential fees
 (student only)
On-site registration fees
(cash only)
Symposium + lunch 90 € 50 € 150 €
saturday evening
25 € 25 € -

Call for papers
Communications are invited as oral or poster presentations in French or in English. Simultaneous interpretation (french/english) will be available during all oral sessions of the symposium. All communications, oral and poster, must fit in one of the following sessions :

1. Societal demand in monitoring marine mammal populations
2. Converting the societal demand into measurable parameters
3. Existing practices of monitoring
4. Marine ammal population indicators and their performance

5. Toward integrated monitoring strategies

Each oral presentation will last 15 minutes, followed by five minutes for questions and discussion.
For poster presentation, authors are invited to prepare one slide for introduction by the chairman during the corresponding oral session.

Deadline for abstract submission: 30th September 2008 (closed)
Information of acceptance: 15th Octobrer 2008

See the pre-programme (pdf file)

Public evening
Informations coming soon....

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