Marion Lefebvre du Prey

Marion Lefebvre du Prey


I hold a bachelor’s degree in Marine Ecology, and a master’s degree in Ecological Modelling, both completed in France. I love combining my ecological and modelling skills, to better understand and predict species and their environment, as well as how climate change impacts them.

I am focused on Coastal Ecology, and young fishes’ habitats. During my masters’ thesis, and a subsequent year-long role as a research assistant at INRAE (French Research Institute for the Agriculture and Environment), I studied the quality of juvenile flatfishes’ habitats. I used individual-based energetic models to assess the issue of trophic limitation in coastal and estuarine nurseries.

I am also involved in the ICES working group on the Value of Coastal habitats for Exploited Populations.

Marion Lefebvre du Prey

PhD title: “Fish nurseries in a changing world: towards new functional indices of habitat quality”

It is essential to identify, understand, and conserve Essential Fish Habitats, for both sustainable fisheries and species’ conservation.

However, for young individuals, habitats needs are poorly understood. Their identification and the assessment of their quality is mainly based on abundance indices, whereas other indices based on fishes’ functional traits (growth, survival and movement) are needed, but overlooked.

The thesis aims to use diverse methods to create new indices of nurseries’ quality, based on fishes’ traits. This project involves 1) laboratory experiments to develop novel molecular and geochemical indices of feeding, growth and movement in free-ranging juvenile fish; and 2) extensive field work to apply these tools in a real-life setting and identify key habitat needs of a commercially valuable species, the common sole Solea solea.

The collaboration between Plymouth University and Conservation authorities will provide a unique opportunity to apply innovative research to support marine policy and management decisions.