Comportement alimentaire des éléphants de mer dans un océan à très fine échelle

Abstract : Ocean dynamics, especially in the southern ocean, are caracterized by strong fluctuation due to mesoscale (eddies, 100-200km) and submesoscale (filaments, <50km) processes. Theses processes are known to strongly stimulate primary production and with him the rest of the trophic chain. However, in marine ecosystems, relationship between prey and predator distribution remain challenging to understand. Such complexe link exist within the Southern Elephant Seal (SES) and their deep diving prey.This PhD worked to understand how the SES diving and foraging behaviour is impacted by submesoscale variation of the environment. Two original aspects of this work was first to use the very high resolution measurement from SES as an unique 3-D in-situ submesoscale dataset and then to combine it to, more classic, satellite temperature and altimetry measurement. This work showed, for the first time the in-situ impact of submesoscale frontal regions on one top predator foraging behaviour. Furthermore, during this study, an original method to identify fine scale frontal regions was developped. Finally, this PhD confirm the relevant use of the Surface Quasi-Geostrophic method in the study of fine scale dynamics, especially in the possibility of high resolution spatial missions (such as SWOT).
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Thomas Jaud. Comportement alimentaire des éléphants de mer dans un océan à très fine échelle. Biologie animale. Université de Bretagne occidentale - Brest, 2015. Français. ⟨NNT : 2015BRES0064⟩. ⟨tel-02164769⟩

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