Mériscope Marine Research Station

Annual Review 2018
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We wish all our partners, former team members, volunteers, interns, sponsors and friends of Mériscope a very Happy New Year. We have put together a short review of those memorable moments that have made 2018 such a magnificent year. 
(© Mériscope & Quark Expeditions)

Exploring Antarctica with Quark Expeditions
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As I am writing these lines, our ship “Ocean Diamond” is exploring the icy waters south of the polar circle. It is my second season as marine biology lecturer and zodiac guide with Quark Expeditions. Since words can not adequately describe the magic of this continent, its landscapes and its wildlife, I have put together a short slide show to share my adventure with you.
(© Dany Zbinden, Dave Merron & Ocean Diamond guests)

Documentary „Le Mériscope » on TVR7
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In August 2017, a documentary entitled “Le Mériscope” and lasting 30 minutes was broadcast on TVR7, a regional TV program in the Province of Québec. It’s an accurate portrait of our course program, the contaminant study and the project with the new research station. Our thanks go to the entire team of TVR7 for their commitment and the magnificent documentary!
(Copyrights TVR7, Mériscope, P. Jucker, B. Kot, A. Simond)

Flame retardants in St. Lawrence whales
Collecting minke whale biopsy

The Mériscope team is very happy! After the second biopsy sampling season in the Marine Park and the St. Lawrence Estuary, we have five new minke whale biopsies to be analyzed in the framework of our contaminant study. These biopsies will allow us to learn more about the accumulation and effects of halogenated flame retardants (HFR) in minke whales and belugas ...     more ...
Photo: Collecting a minke whale biopsy (© Antoine Simond)

Blue whales at the krill buffet – as singles, pairs and trios
Blue whale surface feeding

Six blue whales in one day, in an area of less than 50 square kilometers, that’s the kind of observation that has become less common in the St. Lawrence Estuary in the last ten years. It is a good indication that the krill buffet must be rewarding, since these whales are feeding on krill swarms at the same spot for many hours.     more ...
Photo: Blue whale feeding at the surface (© Gessica Gambaro)

St. Lawrence belugas: portrait of an endangered population in decline
Examining beluga body

A sad day for the beluga population of the St. Lawrence, with two dead belugas reported to the Marine Mammal Emergency Response Network of the St. Lawrence Estuary and adjacent gulf. Despite legal protection since 1979 and a comprehensive recovery strategy, the beluga ...     more ...
Photo: Mériscope team examining the beluga body (© Mériscope / Johanne Lemieux)

Contaminants and their effects on whales of the St. Lawrence
Collecting biopsy

“Together we have the power to protect the ocean”: inspired by the theme of the World Oceans Day 2014, the Mériscope launches a 4-year research program on contaminants and their effects on minke whales and belugas of the St. Lawrence estuary, in close collaboration with other research groups, universities, Canadian federal authorities, and the Marine Mammal ...   more ...
Photo: Taking a biopsy from a blue whale (© Dany Zbinden)

Minke whale monitoring: results of a long-term study
Celebrating 100th minke whale

In the framework of our minke whale monitoring project, the Mériscope team has analyzed the sighting data of the years 2001-2013. Two direct results of this study are a bachelor thesis at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Zurich and the launch of our minke whale catalogue.    more ...
Photo: Celebrating the one hundredth minke whale of the catalogue ! (© Pierre Bolduc)

„Whales & Sails” - Sailing in a whale paradise
Whales & Sails

Travel along one of the most beautiful coastal landscapes of Canada with a sailboat, discover baleen whales and belugas, assist in an on-going research project, follow the rhythm of the tides and the wind – is there a better way to enjoy the sea with all its facets and to support a research project on marine mammals at the same time?    more ...
Photo: Sailboat on a mission in the fjord (© Voile Mercator)