A mission is sailing the waters of the French Mediterranean to observe bottlenose dolphins, a species classified as “vulnerable” by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN).
Binoculars in hand on their catamaran, they stare at the blue horizon off the Gulf of Saint-Tropez, on the lookout for bottlenose dolphins. The work of these biologists is to gain a better understanding of this cetacean, which is endangered in the Mediterranean, in order to better protect it.
Their mission, Tursmed 2, aims to promote the conservation of the bottlenose dolphin, the friendly “Flipper” of the television series, a common species in the Mediterranean at the beginning of the 20th century, which became noticeably scarce in the 1950s.
It is now classified as “vulnerable” by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN), which is holding its world congress in Marseille.
For three weeks, the Miraceti association is sailing the French Mediterranean, in partnership with the French Office for Biodiversity (OFB), to catch a glimpse of this animal.
The first objective is to “collect as much data as possible, both on the presence and absence of the animal”, explains Andrea Antich, who is in charge of the Tursmed 2 mission, because at present “we don’t have enough data to estimate the size of the population” […].
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