Lecturer / Maître de Conférences


Campus du CNRS

1919, route de Mende

34293 Montpellier 5


Tél. :     +33 (0)4 67 61 33 07

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Evolutionary demography


My research focuses on the mechanisms driving population dynamics, with a specific interest in how evolutionary and ecological processes interact to shape life histories and population responses trajectories in free-living birds and mammals in interaction with human activities. Beyond theoretical interests, I am also motivated by using these results to predict species’ responses to environmental changes and inform conservation actions.

Current projects :

1) Population dynamics of the polar bear in Svalbard, in collaboration with the Norwegian Polar Institute, Jon Aars,Olivier Gimenez and Nigel Yoccoz.

We are currently trying to understand the ecological and evolutionary drivers of polar bears’ reproductive strategies. I am also using polar bears as a study case to understand the evolution of reproductive strategies in extreme environments and evaluate the impact of global warning on Arctic species.

2) Mathematics of kinship demography, in collaboration with Samuel Pavard, Christophe Coste and Victor Ronget.

This project aims at investigating the dynamic interplay between social behaviors, kinship structure, population dynamics and evolution of life history traits, using humans and social vertebrates as model species. This is important, for instance to better forecast viability of social species or investigate the coevolution of social and demographic traits. To do this we will provide new tools to investigate the mathematical relationships between the dynamics of structured populations and their kinship structure.

3) Understanding the determinants of ageing trajectories, in collaboration with JM Robine and the working group ‘The metrics of longevity’ composed of French demographers and evolutionary biologists.

We are interested in comparing the patterns of ageing trajectories across the tree of life, and contrast various longevity metrics.


I am teaching statistics and programming with R to master students at EPHE since 2016 (30h/year).

Other teaching include a class on life history evolution, one on matrix models, one on phylogeny with R to master students at EPHE and practicals on population dynamics using ULM for master students at the university of Montpellier.


Folio, D.M., Aars, J., Gimenez, O., Derocher, A.E., Wiig, Ø. and Cubaynes, S., 2019. How many cubs can a mum nurse? Maternal age and size influence litter size in polar bears. Biology letters15(5), p.20190070.

Deelen, J., Evans, D.S., Arking, D.E., Tesi, N., Nygaard, M., Liu, X., Wojczynski, M.K., Biggs, M.L., van Der Spek, A., Atzmon, G. […] Cubaynes S, […] and Ware, E.B., 2019. A meta-analysis of genome-wide association studies identifies multiple longevity genes. Nature communications, 10.1-14.

Cubaynes, S., Galas S., Richaud M., Sanz A., Pradel R., Tavecchia G., Roques, S., Colchero F., Shefferson R., and Camarda C. G. To be published in 2020. Survival analyses across the tree of life (book chapter) in Demographic Methods across the tree of life, edited by Gamelon M. and Salguero-Gomez R., Oxford University Press.

Herr M, Jeune B, Fors S, Andersen-Ranberg K, Ankri J, Arai Y, Cubaynes S, […], Robine JM; 5-Coop Group. 2018. Frailty and associated factors among centenarians in the 5-COOP countries. Gerontology. 64:521-531.

Louvrier, J., Duchamp, C., Lauret, V., Marboutin, E., Cubaynes, S., Choquet, R., Miquel, C. and Gimenez, O., 2018. Mapping and explaining wolf recolonization in France using dynamic occupancy models and opportunistic data. Ecography, 41(4), pp.647-660.

Herr, M., Jeune, B., Fors, S., Andersen-Ranberg, K., Ankri, J., Arai, Y., Cubaynes, S., Santos-Eggimann, B., Zekry, D., Parker, M. and Saito, Y., 2018. Frailty and associated factors among centenarians in the 5-COOP countries. Gerontology, 64(6), pp.521-531.

Deere, J.A., Coulson, T., Cubaynes, S. and Smallegange, I.M., 2017. Unsuccessful dispersal affects life history characteristics of natal populations: The role of dispersal related variation in vital rates. Ecological Modelling, 366, pp.37-47.

Robine, J. M., and Cubaynes, S. Espérance de vie, espérance de santé : tendances convergentes ou divergentes sur le plan mondial? in: A.M. Guillemard, E. Mascova, S. Moulias ( dir) La Découverte, coll. Recherches, 2017, pp. 37-58

Robine, J. M., and Cubaynes, S. (2017). Worldwide demography of centenarians. Mechanisms of Ageing and Development, 165, pp.59-67.

Pozo, R., Schindler, S.,Cubaynes, S., Cusack, J., Coulson, T. and Malo, A. (2016). Modeling the impact of selective harvesting on red deer antlers. The Journal of Wildlife Management, 80, 978-989.

Cubaynes, S., MacNulty, D. R., Stahler, D. R., Quimby, K. A., Smith, D. W., and Coulson, T. (2014). Density-dependent intraspecific aggression regulates survival in northern Yellowstone wolves (Canis lupus). Journal of Animal Ecology, 83, 1344- 1356.

Desprez, M., Harcourt, R., Hindell, M. A., Cubaynes, S., Gimenez, O., and McMa- hon, C. R. (2014). Age-specific cost of first reproduction in female southern elephant seals. Biology Letters, 10, 20140264.

Cubaynes, S., Lavergne, C., and O. Gimenez. (2013) Fitting animal survival models with temporal random effects. Environmental and Ecological Statistics, 1-12.

Massey, J., Cubaynes, S., and T. Coulson. (2013) Will central Wyoming elk stop migrating to Yellowstone, and should we care? Ecology, 94, 1271-1274.

Bolker, B. M., Gardner, B., Maunder, M., Berg, C. W., Brooks, M., Comita, L., Crone, E., Cubaynes, S., et al. (2013) Strategies for fitting nonlinear ecological models in R, AD Model Builder, and BUGS. Methods in Ecology and Evolution, 4, 501–512.

Gimenez, O., Abadi, F., Barnagaud, J.Y., Blanc, L., Buoro, M., Cubaynes, S.,Desprez, M., Gamelon, M., Guilhaumon, F., Lagrange, P., Madon, B., Marescot, L., Papadatou, E., Papaix, J., Peron, G. and S. Servanty (2013). How can quantita- tive ecology be attractive to young scientists? Balancing computer/desk work with fieldwork. Animal Conservation, 16, 134-136.

Cubaynes, S., Lavergne, C., Marboutin, E., and Gimenez, O. (2012). Assessing in- dividual heterogeneity using model selection criteria: how many mixture components in capture–recapture models? Methods in Ecology and Evolution, 3, 564-573.

Cubaynes, S., Doutrelant, C., Gregoire, A., Perret, P., Faivre, B. and O. Gimenez. (2012) Testing hypotheses in evolutionary ecology with imperfect detection: Struc- tural Equation Modeling of capture-recapture data. Ecology, 93,248-255.

Caniglia, Romolo, Fabbri, E., Cubaynes, S., Gimenez, O., Lebreton, J. D., and Randi, E. (2012). An improved procedure to estimate wolf abundance using non- invasive genetic sampling and capture–recapture mixture models." Conservation Genetics, 13,53-64.

Cubaynes, S., Doherty, P.F., Schreiber, E.A., Gimenez, O. (2011) To breed or not to breed: a seabird’s response to extreme climatic events. Biology Letters, 7,303-306.

Marescot, L., Pradel, R., Duchamp, C., Cubaynes, S., Marboutin, E., Choquet, R., Miquel, C. and Gimenez, O. (2011) Capture-recapture population growth rate as a robust tool against detection heterogeneity for population management. Ecological Applications, 21, 2898-2907

Cubaynes, S., Pradel, R., Choquet, R., Duchamp, C., Gaillard, J-M., Lebreton, J-D., Marboutin, E., Miquel, C., Reboulet, A., Poillot, C., Gimenez, O. (2010) Importance of accounting for detection heterogeneity when estimating abundance: the case of French wolves. Conservation Biology, 24, 621–626.

Papaix, J., Cubaynes, S., Buoro, M., Charmantier, A. Perret, P. and Gimenez, O. (2010) Combining capture–recapture data and pedigree information to assess heritability of demographic parameters in the wild.Journal of Evolutionary Biology. 23, 2176‚Äì2184.

Rouan, L., Cubaynes, S., C. Duchamp, C. Miquel, A.-M. Reboulet, O. Gimenez, J.-D. Lebreton, R. Choquet and R. Pradel (2008). Modèles de mélange en Capture- Recapture. Proceedings of the Meeting of the French Statistical Society, Marseille, France.

Aurélien BESNARD

altLecturer / Maître de Conférences

HDR depuis le 04/09/2013 mémoire à télécharger ici

Campus du CNRS
1919, route de Mende
34293 Montpellier 5

Tél. :     +33 (0)4 67 61 32 94
Fax      :+33 (0)4 67 41 21 38

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Keywords:Biostatistics; Conservation biology; Amphibians; Birds, Reptiles, Quantitative ecology; Population Dynamics and Demography, Sampling designs.


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