Valérie Allain
Fisheries Scientist - Trophic interactions; environmental variability; biodiversity and habitats (GEF-OFMP project)

Information: Valerie is a marine biologist; she obtained her PhD in Biological Oceanology at the Institut Universitaire Europeen de la Mer in Brest (France) in 1999. There, she studied the ecology, biology and fisheries of the bottom deep-sea fish populations from the cold Eastern North Atlantic. She joined the Ecosystem Monitoring and Analysis team of the SPC Oceanic Fisheries Programme in September 2000. She has been working since on the pelagic tuna ecosystem of the Western and Central Pacific Ocean, focusing mainly on the food web study. With her collaborators she analyses in the laboratory in Noumea the pelagic fish stomach samples collected by observers from the National Observer Programmes of the SPC area. This data allow us to establish the diets of the tuna and other fish in the region for inclusion in ecosystem models such as Ecopath. To complement this prey-predator study, stable isotope analysis and fat content are conducted to determine the trophic level of the species and their condition; stable isotopes also serve as chemical tags to try and trace the fish movements. Since 2006, Valerie explores with her colleagues the relationship existing between tuna aggregations and seamounts in the Western and Central Pacific Ocean.


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