AREAS OF EXPERTISE
For 15 years, our studies have contributed to the understanding of the functioning of Mediterranean coastal marine ecosystems and have worked towards their conservation in collaboration with managers. From the definition of scientific issues to the statistical processing of data, including their collection in-situ via adapted experimental designs, we manage and carry out these research programs, in conjunction with our local, national and international scientific and institutional partners, both public and private. We devote a particular effort to share and transfer our expertise, in the form of scientific publications, and recommendations but also through our participation as members of scientific boards and commissions.
Our research applied to conservation considers the study of the functional importance of habitats and their 3D structure in the life cycle of living organisms, including numerous exploited and/or emblematic species among fish and invertebrates. This work concerns various biocenoses and ecosystems, including the shallow rocky reefs, phanerogam meadows, as well as coralligenous reefs and emblematic species such as the red coral. In a global change framework, we are also interested in the underlying processes affecting habitat transformations on the associated stands: installation, growth, mortality. Our scientific projects are built and carried out in close collaboration with research institutes and laboratories like Aix-Marseille University, the National Scientific Research Council (CNRS) and the French National Research Institute for Sustainable Development (IRD: MIO, LIS, IMBE), the CRIOBE, the MNHN (National Museum of Natural History), the UMR Marbec, the Institute of Cienciès del Mar (CSIC, Spain), etc. Through these partnerships, we co-supervise several doctoral theses and regularly welcome students for their Master’s thesis.
In addition to our work on the coastal biocenosis knowledge and their response to global change, we are investigating the recovery capacities of ecosystems. We are conducting experimental projects that aim to study the possibility and modalities of restoring populations or communities that have suffered degradation. Our objective is to provide reliable data and protocols for the regeneration of damaged ecosystems.
NATURALISTIC SURVEY AND MONITORING
In application of the European Directives concerning the environment (WFD, Habitat Directive, MSFD), managers of coastal territories need rigorous scientific data collected on a regular basis over the long term in order to optimize their management plans and ecosystem conservation actions. Our scientific works include a component focused on the inventory, mapping and characterisation of coastal ecosystems. The results allow us to support managers in planning their actions. We work in direct collaboration with the teams of National Nature Reserves, National Parks, Marine Nature Parks and other institutions or collectivities along the French Mediterranean coast. Our expertise also leads us to contribute to the diagnosis of territories located in other European countries and around the Mediterranean Sea (Balkans, Eastern Mediterranean, etc.).
Photogrammetry is one of our fields of expertise. The experience and versatility of our team have given us recognition in this area, both with public (CNRS Laboratory of Information and Systems Sciences, RMC Water Agency, local authorities (City of Marseille)) and private (COMEX SA) organizations. For 15 years, with a rigorous methodological approach, we have been leading and carrying out scientific projects and contributing to multi-partner programs in close collaboration with research institutes. We also carry out mediation projects using a pedagogical approach with digital media, reconstructing in 3D the submerged heritage such as some emblematic diving sites (Coral Cave, Goul du Pont, the Pharillons, the wrecks of Lebanon, Ker Bihan and Messerschmitt, …), particularly in the framework of the IUCN World Congress 2020-2021.
THALIA – TRANSFORMATION OF HABITATS AND ASSEMBLAGES DUE TO ANTHROPOGENIC IMPACTS
Study of rocky bottom three-dimensional (3D) structure and its possible influence on fish (teleost) and invertebrate assemblages in a context of global change.
Study of the ecological niche, connectivity and biodiversity of gorgonian populations within the coralligenous ecosystem in the French Mediterranean (20-100 m depth).
LONG-TERM MONITORING OF RED CORAL POPULATIONS
Long-term monitoring of red coral populations in various Mediterranean MPAs
Essential fish (Teleost) habitats of the coastal shallows areas: mapping, availability and consideration in the zoning of management measures.
THE ODYSSEY OF MARINE PROTECTED AREAS
Driven by WWF-France, the MPA Odyssey is a pluriannual scientific expedition aboard the Blue Panda, aimed at strengthening the impact of advocacy so that 30% of the Mediterranean is protected and recovering and that 3% benefits from strong protection. Septentrion Environnement is coordinating the scientific diving operations and protocols, as well as compiling, analysing and interpreting the data collected.
ASSESSMENT OF FISH POPULATIONS IN THE KATIČ MPA
Assessment of fish populations and their essentiel habitats in order to optimize the management measures planned for the new Katič Marine Protected Area (Montenegro)
LANDSCAPE SCALE PHOTOGRAMMETRY: WRECKS
We are involved in the 3D reconstruction of protected archaeological sites, both on land and underwater. Numerous international scientific works attest to the expertise and capacity to carry out large-scale projects such as the 3D restitution of the Grand Ribaud F wreck (Drap et al., 2003), the achievement of the European IST VENUS project (Drap et al., 2007) or the development of a high-resolution real-time underwater optical survey system.
LANDSCAPE SCALE PHOTOGRAMMETRY: NATURAL SUBSTRATES
We use photogrammetry to study structural changes in the coralligenous and infralittoral rock with photophilic algae biocenoses under current global change.
PHOTOGRAMMETRY: SUBMARINE AND SUBAQUATIC CAVES
Several surveys of underwater caves were carried out by Septentrion Environnement's scientific divers (Boulegeade, Coral and South Riou caves).
PHOTOGRAMMETRY FOR THE POPULATION DYNAMICS STUDY OF FIXED SPECIES
We use photogrammetry for the study of Corallium rubrum populations and for Alcyonaria transplantation projects
PHOTOGRAMMETRY: THE NEW TOOLS DEVELOPMENT
More than fifteen years of experience in underwater photogrammetry surveys have led us to develop an original methodological and instrumental approach for the survey of large underwater surfaces in collaboration with the CNRS (LIS UMR 7020). We are now working on the development of new survey tools, including the KarKam system.