From genes to marine ecosystems: In a context of global change, the research conducted at the station aims to better understand and protect.
The Concarneau Marine Station specialises in the exploration of marine biodiversity, specific as well as genetic and functional, and their responses to natural and / or anthropogenic environmental constraints. It now has an international audience in this field. This research mainly concerns coastal and offshore North-East Atlantic and polar marine areas.
In recent years, an integrative taxonomic approach (morphological, molecular, ontogenetic, physiological, anatomical, ethological) has been implemented in different taxonomic groups: micro-algae (in collaboration with the Ifremer team), macro-algae, teleosts and chondrichthyes (including larvae) and benthic organisms, especially sponges, hydraires, bryozoans, ascidians, annelids, echinoderms and molluscs.
In order to better understand the processes underlying the spatial and temporal dynamics of biodiversity and particularly the responses to global changes (climatic and anthropogenic), research in the ecology of populations, communities, macroecology, functional and integrative ecology is under development. This research is based as much on laboratory experiments as on the analysis of data collected in natura locally and globally. For example, work is being carried out on microbial mats and on carbonate biomineralizations, especially on molluscs and echinoderms, and research on community responses (birds, algae and other benthic phyla) to climate and anthropogenic changes from standardised data, especially from participatory science programmes. Part of this research is reflected in the development of biodiversity status indicators.
Such integrative approaches can feed into models that are essential for the management and conservation of not only biodiversity, but also ecosystems.
These research activities, developed through many collaborative programmes, are funded by regional, national, European and international programmes.