The Muséum National d'Histoire Naturelle has launched in 2010 the CETA projet (Cetaceans Observations Off Terre Adélie). The project aims at documenting background information on summer presence and relative abundance of cetaceans over the continental shelf off Terre Adélie, Eastern Antarctica. It will constitute one of the rare French contribution to the ongoing assessment of large whales of the ... Southern Ocean conducted by the International Whaling Commission, as well as to the Regional Non-Lethal Whale Research Partnerships in the Southern Ocean recently proposed by Australia. Relative abundances and distribution of minke, fin, humpback, blue, right and killer whales will be surveyed from onboard R/V l'Astrolabe used as a platform of opportunity. Field work will be conducted during existing oceanographic surveys conducted annually in January off Dumont D'Urville. Cetacean distribution will be related to the distribution of biotic (zooplankton) and abiotic (hydrographic parameters, sea ice condition and physiography) collected during the cruises. When possible, photo ID and biopsies samples of humpback and blue whales will be collected and compared to existing catalogues from the breeding grounds in order to assess the migratory connections between breeding grounds and feeding areas. After two years the outcomes of the study will be assessed to decide whether it is worth conducting whale research at this location on a longer term and possibly on a larger scale.