[MARMAM] Symposium on Monitoring Strategies for Marine Mammal Populations - last announcement

jspitz jerome.spitz at univ-lr.fr
Fri Oct 17 07:10:42 PDT 2008


*Symposium on Monitoring Strategies for Marine Mammal Populations,

La Rochelle, France, November 21-23, 2008*

Hosted by the *University of La Rochelle *(LIENSs / CRMM)


*Scientific invited speakers*:
Aleta Hohn (USA) / Peter Evans (UK) / Giuseppe Notarbartolo di Sciara 
(Italy) / Graham Pierce (UK/Spain) / Mark Tasker (UK) / Vincent Ridoux 

Online registration are open until October 30th on the symposium website 


Please, read the notice on the registration/submission home web page.

For more information do not hesitate to contact us at: 
conference2008 at univ-lr.fr <mailto:conference2008 at univ-lr.fr>

Marine mammals are important actors in marine ecosystems. Their position 
of top predators confers them a general value of indicators of marine 
ecosystem conservation state and exposes them to several types of 
pressures related to human activities at sea, including accumulation of 
contaminants along food webs and interactions with fisheries. Other 
sources of pressures and threats, independent of their role of top 
predators, include /inter alia/ disturbance, collisions with ships and 
acoustic pollution. In most European countries, marine mammals are 
protected by national, EU and international texts, which clarify the 
responsibility of governments in monitoring and conservation of these 
populations (Marine Protected Areas, national regulation on protected 
species, Habitat Directive, Common Fishery Policy, regional agreements 
ASCOBANS and ACCOBAMS, …). However indicators proposed to estimate the 
status of marine mammal populations are only defined in very general 
terms, with mainly two criteria that are fairly easy to express but 
difficult to document: abundance and distribution. Other approaches are 
empirically used but their value as monitoring tools has not been really 
assessed; they notably include acoustic monitoring, stranding schemes, 
coastal watch and at-sea sightings from platforms of opportunity. As a 
consequence, to elaborate properly a strategy for monitoring the 
conservation status of marine mammal populations in Europe, it is 
necessary to compare available methods and estimate the performance of 
potential indicators, in terms of their capacity to detect changes in 
wild populations and of their cost-effectiveness.

The objectives of the meeting will thus encompass the following topics:

**1. Expressing the societal demand in monitoring marine mammal populations

*2. Converting the societal demand into measurable parameters

*3. Existing practices of monitoring

*4. Marine mammal population indicators and their performance

*5. Examples of integrated monitoring strategies*

Expected participants would include people in charge of public 
environmental policies, in particular as to the monitoring and 
conservation of marine mammal populations and habitats at national, EU 
and international levels, research groups in marine mammal biology and 
conservation and field correspondents or operators who collect and 
synthesize data relative to the state of conservation of marine mammal 
populations. It will thus be a unique opportunity to gather actors 
involved at all levels in monitoring marine mammal populations, from 
policy makers to data collectors.

*The organizing committee:*
The Ecology and Conservation of Marine Mammal research group of the 
University of La Rochelle (constituted of /Centre de Recherche sur les 
Mammifères Marins/ CRMM and /Littoral Environnement et Sociétés/ LIENSs, 
Joint Research Unit 6250 CNRS/ULR) will host an international symposium 
on strategies for monitoring marine mammal populations, from 21-23 
November 2008 in La Rochelle, France.

The symposium is

hosted by: University of La Rochelle, France

sponsored by: French Agency of the Marine Protected Areas, French 
Ministry of Environment, Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique 
(CNRS), Regional Council of Poitou-Charentes

and supported by: ACCOBAMS, ASCOBANS

For the organizing committee,

Pr Vincent Ridoux, University of La Rochelle.

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