Charlène GEMARD


Postdoc – CEFE-CNRS

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Twitter: @CharleneGemard


My work focuses on various aspects of behavioural ecology in birds, using non-invasive methods (bioacoustics, videos). During my PhD, I studied the determinisms and implications of vocal signals in mate choice in seabirds. I pursued my research by joining the MAPE research program as a postdoc supervised by Aurélien Besnard and Olivier Duriez. I aim at highlighting factors that increase bird collision risk in windfarms to provide new insights about bird behaviour in wind facilities and to better prevent fatalities.


MAPE research program (French acronym for Bird Mortality in operating terrestrial Windfarm;, led by Aurélien Besnard and Olivier Duriez. The first axis of MAPE (WP1 – Causes of bird mortality in windfarms) is a collaboration with a French company specialized in image analysis, WIPSEA (

About me

I am a self-motivated early- career researcher who graduated on behavioural ecology. I look forward to extending my research interests through cross- disciplinary projects in bird conservation. I enjoy bridging research with fieldworking, teaching, and science popularization. In my free time, I am also a beer-taster, enthusiast hiker, fervent reader and hard rock fan.

Project outline

Work Package 1 of MAPE focuses on the causes of bird mortality in terrestrial windfarms. It aims at (i) describing birds’ flight behaviour in windfarms and (ii) understanding what factors (weather conditions, landscape context, bird flight behaviour and/or phenology, windfarm configuration…) increase the collision risk. Most past studies on this topic focused on a few species and/or few sites and/or few factors. To go further in our understanding of bird collisions, WP1 consists in a global analysis, i.e., jointly studying several species, sites, factors and years. It relies on data recorded by Automatic Detection Systems on turbines (videos, pictures) thanks to a collaborative approach with European wind energy actors.


Bio (Background, employment)

  • 2013-2015: Master in Biology and Ecology, University of Angers (France)
  • 2016: Field assistant in Barn Owl behavioural ecology, Roulin Group, University of Lausanne (Switzerland)
  • 2017-2020: PhD on the determinisms and implications of vocal signals in burrowing Petrels, University of Montpellier (France)
  • 2021: Research Assistant in Houbara cognition, RENECO, Missour (Morocco)
  • Since 2022: postdoc in bird conservation, CEFE-CNRS, Montpellier (France)
  • Since 2022: picture analyst on the SEMMACAPE and OWFSOMM projects, WIPSEA, Rennes (France)
  • Since 2022: bioacoustics consultant on the ACOUCENE project, CESAB, Montpellier (France)


(Co) Supervision of students

Eliette Reboud (2 months, 2018)

Jérémy Chahelot (2 months, 2019)

Léo Maucourt (6 months, 2020)



  • Gémard C., Planas-Bielsa V., Bonadonna F., Aubin T. (2021). Contextual variations in calls of two non-oscine birds: the blue petrel Halobaena caerulea and the Antarctic prion Pachyptila desolata. Behavioral Ecology, arab020.
  • Gémard C., Aubin T., Reboud E.R, Bonadonna F. (2021). Call rate, fundamental frequency and syntax determine male-call attractiveness in blue petrels Halobaena caerulea. Behavioral Ecology and Sociobiology, 75(55).
  • Gémard C., Aubin T., Bonadonna F. (2019). Males’ calls carry information about individual identity and physical characteristics of the caller in two burrowing petrels. Journal of Avian Biology, 50(12).
  • San-Jose L.M., Séchaud R., Schalcher K., Judes C., Questiaux A., Oliveira-Xavier A., Gémard C., Almasi B., Béziers P., Kelber A., Amar A., Roulin A. (2019). Differential fitness effects of moonlight on plumage colour morphs in barn owls. Nature Ecology & Evolution, 3, 1331–1340.
  • Ducouret P., Dreiss A., Gémard C., Falourd X., Roulin A. (2018). Barn owl nestlings vocally escalate when interrupted by a sibling: evidence from an interactive playback experiment. Animal Behaviour, 145, 51-57.
  • Sentis A., Gémard C., Jaugeon B., Boukal D. S. (2017). Predator diversity and environmental change modify the strengths of trophic and non-trophic interactions. Global change biology, 23(7), 2629-2640.