The project

Microbial bioindicator in sediments
Search for bioindicators in the key compartment in the dynamics of a water body
Trophic indicator in water
Transposition of the tool developed on the French Atlantic coast based on the study of the first links of the aquatic trophic chain
Development of a toolbox
Tools enabling environmental managers to identify the right intervention levers and to assess the effectiveness or impact of action policies
Interaction with the actors and managers of territories to ensure coordination and deployment of the developed tools

Work groups

november 2020 – december 2021

WP 1: Biogeography: identification of microbial bioindicators in the SUDOE zone

The main objective of this work package is to carry out a biogeographical study to characterise the microbial communities of coastal and retro-littoral zones, covering the SUDOE zone and including the Atlantic coast (from the south of Spain to New Aquitaine, via Portugal), but also the Mediterranean coast (Balearic Islands and French coast).
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november 2020 – december 2021
november 2020 – december 2022

WP 2: Identification of the trophic status of the water column in the Sudoe coastal zone

This work package aims at deploying the “trophic indicator”, already implemented in France on freshwater marshes, on different sites at the scale of the SUDOE territory (Spain and Portugal) and thus evaluate its robustness and the possible evolutions that should be made to adapt to different geographical and climatic contexts.
In each SUDOE country, three main types of wetlands will be studied: bays and estuaries, salt marshes, freshwater marshes.
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november 2020 – december 2022
october 2021 – february 2023

WP 3: Experimental ecology and validation of the bioindicator tool in the SUDOE zone

The objective of this WP is to develop and validate the microbial bioindicator tools identified in WP1; to associate them with trophic indicators (WP2); and to develop an operational framework at the SUDOE scale necessary for the deployment of these tools to the territories.
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october 2021 – february 2023

WP 1: Biogeography: identification of microbial bioindicators in the SUDOE zone

The aim of this activity is to establish the sampling plan for the biogeographical study on the characterisation of microbial communities in coastal and retro-littoral zones, and to implement the sapmling campaign in a coordinated manner.

The choice of sites will be performed considering: i/ the issues related to local management challenges, ii/ a good representativeness of the zones at the scale of the institutions and the SUDOE space, including salty and brackish environments (bays and estuaries) and freshwater retro-littoral marshes; port areas allowing the integration of pollution issues.

The analysis of the data obtained and their interpretation will be carried out jointly by the academics and local managers.

This information will allow to describe the ecological status of studied areas at a time point (T0), essential for the monitoring, management and protection of the biodiversity of the studied areas.

A selection of descriptors identified in the biogeographical study will be proposed in order to establish a prototype of microbial bioindicator.

The selection will be performed considering the adaptability of the bioindicator to the diversity of environments in the SUDOE area, their ability to describe the management issues studied, and their operational applicability.

WP 2: Identification of the trophic status of the water column in the Sudoe coastal zone

Acquisition of the data necessary for the application of the trophic indicator within the framework of a temporal monitoring of the coastal wetlands of 3 sites spread over the three countries of the SUDOE area and of a reference network located in Charente Maritime.

This activity aims a first application of the trophic indicator in the wetlands of the SUDOE region. It will allow :

1/ to spatially characterise the alternation patterns of food webs observed on each sampling site throughout the year;
2/ to qualify for each site the major ecosystem functions provided by the bacterial and planktonic compartment;
3/ to analyse the variability of the results obtained.

This activity aims to evaluate the operational potential of the trophic indicator:
1/ Assessment of the technical and scientific robustness of the trophic indicator
2/ Assessment of the management issues identified
3/ Identification of the need to develop the trophic indicator in order to optimise its potential for use in the retro-littoral wetlands of the SUDOE region.

WP 3: Experimental ecology and validation of the bioindicator tool in the SUDOE zone

The potential microbial bioindicators identified in WP1 will be tested in response to climate change conditions that result in changes in the physico-chemical parameters of the environment. Conditions reproduced in microcosms, simulated in controlled conditions:

  • salinity fluctuation,
  • the effect of metal pollution,
  • the change in nutrient load that causes eutrophication of the environment.

This activity will allow the association of the microbial bioindicators (WP1) with the trophic indicators (WP2) in order to test their coupled use during the monitoring carried out in the BIOMIC partner territories.

The complementarity of the two indicators constitutes a “toolbox” that will thus be evaluated over time.

This activity aims to build, in collaboration with national institutions, the context for the operational deployment of the indicators in the SUDOE.