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Biodiversité anguillicole en milieu tropical insulaire (Tahiti) face aux aménagements hydroélectriques

Abstract : This thesis in fundamental and applied research has for biological model the freshwater eel which has always fascinated the world of the research by its unique cycle of life and all its mysteries not solved for some. Worldwide, 19 species of eels exist, some of which are declining in temperate zones, which may justify the increase in research in the tropics. In French Polynesia, this mysterious animal is sacred; the Polynesian legends associate the eels with the creation of life. Three species are present: the marbled eel "Anguilla marmorata", the mountain eel "Anguilla megastoma" and the eel "Anguilla obscura". They do not have the same spatial distribution where the former adapts to any medium, the second goes up the rivers to the upper valley at several hundred meters of altitude, while the latter remains in the lower valley preferring the stagnant waters. Thanks to the numerous rivers on Tahiti, this main island of Polynesia is in the midst of an energy transition and now favors renewable energies; particularly hydroelectricity. However, hydroelectric developments known to cause problems of ecological continuity of freshwater biodiversity, especially for eels, will interest us in this thesis work on the Cifre grant. It is in this context that this thesis, in the largest valley of Tahiti, is the Papenoo. Two problems are studied: the recruitment of glass eel and the study of the adult population. Our results over the three years following the arrival of juvenile eels in the mouth of the Papenoo reveal a seasonal recruitment of elvers from November to March with two peaks in December and January. More than 80% of elvers are Anguilla marmorata. For adult populations, we observe: 1/ more than 90% of the population is also Anguilla marmorata, 2/ adult eels have a density gradient from downstream to upstream, and 3/ biological continuity does not come from dams or water removal in themselves, but comes from the tailrace leaving the hydropower plant where we observe an over-attractiveness for the eels. This study proved to be very important in the theoretical advancement of our biological and ecological knowledge about the eel, in the appropriation by industry of good practices and in a solid communication on the possible coexistence between management and development.
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Herehia Helme. Biodiversité anguillicole en milieu tropical insulaire (Tahiti) face aux aménagements hydroélectriques. Biodiversité et Ecologie. PSL Research University, 2017. Français. ⟨NNT : 2017PSLEP045⟩. ⟨tel-02106779v1⟩

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