10 years of data collection via REPCET®.
The REPCET® system was co-developed by Souffleurs d’Ecume and Chrisar Software Technologies. Scientific and educational monitoring is provided by the NGO MIRACETI. The system has been operational since 2010. As of 31 December 2020, 37 REPCET units are deployed on board commercial vessels, as well as 3 fixed units deployed at CROSS MED, CROSS AG (Antilles-Guyane) and MIRACETI.
The system allows the crews of equipped vessels to report their cetacean (or floating object) sightings in real time to the entire network of commercial vessels equipped with it. When a cetacean is reported on their route, the crews adapt their navigation to avoid a collision. Each year, reports of cetaceans are issued, mainly from the Mediterranean but also from other seas and oceans.
Between July 2010 and December 2020, 7,047 reports were transmitted via REPCET®, 6,253 of which were from the Mediterranean. The most frequently reported species in the Mediterranean is the fin whale with 1,699 reports out of a total of 2,417 reports of large cetaceans. As the fin whale is the most sensitive species to collisions, a notable effort is made by the crews of vessels equipped to transmit reports of this species and thus prevent collisions. The sperm whale is also reported with a total of 330 reports in 10 years.
It is also possible to report the presence of small cetaceans in the system, and 2,912 reports of small cetaceans have been issued in the Mediterranean. These reports were mainly of striped dolphins (1,609 reports) and bottlenose dolphins (510 reports).
Fin whale and striped dolphin reports are very seasonal, with peaks in the summer months (June, July and August). This is probably due to the fact that more commercial vessels sail during this period in the Mediterranean, particularly in the waters of the Pelagos sanctuary where these two species are present in large numbers in summer. These results are consistent with known scientific data on these species. With a peak in the presence of animals during the summer period, particularly for the fin whale.