The Alpine Marmot Project

Welcome to the Alpine Marmot Project


The adventure of the Alpine Marmot Project began in 1990. That year, D. Allainé was hired as a professor at the University Claude Bernard-Lyon 1. The university team was made up of M. Le Berre, R. Ramousse, J. Coulon, and D. Allainé. At the time, Vanoise National Park applied for scientific monitoring of the alpine marmot to gather information to help resolve the conflict between farmers and marmots, over the damage caused in hayfields. Discussions were initiated between the research team and the nature protection organization, and quickly, the Grande Sassière Natural Reserve, managed by the Vanoise National Park, was chosen for studies based on the abundance of marmots and the presence and accessibility of the chalet.


In the spring of 1990, the research team initiated their studies at the Santel chalet. A mark and recapture program and an observation protocol were immediately developed and still exist today (see Monitoring the Marmots). These protocols and the research that has taken place since are the basis of our understanding of the ecology and biology of these alpine marmot populations.