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24, chemin de Borde Rouge -Auzeville - CS52627 31326 Castanet Tolosan cedex - France

Last update: May 2021

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Aquapôle INRA

Inra Bordeaux-Aquitaine
Quartier Ibarron
64310 Saint-Pée-sur-Nivelle

tél : +33 (0) 5 59 51 59 51
fax : +33 (0) 5 59 54 51 52

Saint Pée sur Nivelle

Saint Pée sur Nivelle
The town of Saint Pée-sur-Nivelle is located 25km South West of Bayonne, in the heart of the Basque country. The Hydrobiology station, which was installed in 1977 on 13 ha. of land, is dedicated to the sustainable exploitation of freshwaters primarily for fishing and fish farming. This research contributes to aquatic resources management

Today, the Saint Pée-sur-Nivelle station employs 53 staff throughout 3500 m2 of laboratories and experimental buildings used by:

  • the Nuage Lab (Nutrition, Aquaculture and Genomics) working with the PHASE Department (Animal Physiology – Livestock Systems)
  • the Ecobiop Lab (Behavioural Ecology and Fish Population Biology) working with the EFPA Department (Forest, Grassland and Freshwater Ecology)

© INRA - G. Choubert

In addition, experimental structures are dedicated to field tests and protocols: Saint Pée-sur-Nivelle, Lapitxuri, Uxondoa, Donzacq (Landes) and Lees-Athas (vallée d’Aspe).

Technical platform (Saint Pée sur Nivelle)

On the same site as the hydrobiology station, a technical platform (1100m2 building) provides a closed circulation system, allowing protocols in the following domains: digestibility activity, feeding activity and rhythm, breeding of fish larvae (fresh water and sea water), development of experimental food, a fluvarium (artificial river in a loop) and rooms to observe fish behaviour.




© INRA - G. Choubert
Atelier de digestibilité

© INRA - A. Escaffre
Bac d'élevage larvaire

© INRA - M. Héland


Near the town of Ainhoa, the lapitxuri experimental spawning channel was built to study fish behaviour in semi-artificial conditions. This device was supplemented by semi-immerged observation rooms, incubation rooms as well technical rooms.


© INRA - S. Glise Lapitxuri : chenal de frai


At a short distance from the laboratories, the Uxondoa control station authorizes a fine monitoring of natural populations of Atlantic salmon, shad and brown trout.


© INRA - J. Dumas Uxondoa control station