The Alpine Marmot Project

Welcome to the Alpine Marmot Project

Pierre Dupont


PhD – Université Claude-Bernard – Lyon1


tel. : +33(0)4 72 43 35 84
fax : +33(0)4 72 43 13 88

Biométrie et Biologie Évolutive
UCB Lyon 1 – Bât. Grégor Mendel
43 bd du 11 novembre 1918
69622 VILLEURBANNE cedex


The Alpine marmot (Marmota marmota) has a particular social structure based on family groups. Each family group is typically composed of a single dominant adult couple, a variable number of subordinate adults of both sexes (individuals of two years or more), juveniles of one year and pups. All members of a family group share the same territory. Only the dominant pair reproduces and subordinate individuals are involved in rearing the youngs (Allainé & Theuriau 2004). The composition of the group will therefore influence the future of its members.

My PhD project has two goals:

1) Find the factors that will affect the dynamic of each social group through the estimation of vital rates (fecundity, survival) in relation with the characteristics of social groups.

2) Find the contribution of the different social groups in the overall population dynamics.


French Ministry of Education and Research grant (2013 – 2016)


  • Dupont P, Pradel R, Lardy S, Allaine D, Cohas A (2015), Litter sex composition influences dominance status of Alpine marmots (Marmota marmota), Oecologia, 179 : 3, 753-763, DOI: 10.1007/s00442-015-3375-6.

Berger V., Lemaître JF., Dupont P., Allainé D., Gaillard JM. and Cohas A. (2016) Age-specific survival in the socially monogamous alpine marmot (Marmota marmota): evidence of senescence. Journal of Mammalogy, XX: 1-9. pdf

Bichet C., Sauzet S., Averty L., Dupont P., Ferrandiz-Rovira M., Ferrari C., Figueroa I., Tafani M., Rézouki C., López BC., and Cohas, A. (2016) Multiple geographic origins and high genetic differentiation of the Alpine marmots reintroduced in the Pyrenees. Conservation Genetics, 17: 1157–1169. pdf