An important effort has been recently made to detect spectroscopically galaxies at z ~ 6 and higher where the cosmic reionization is thought to occur. The drop of the fraction of Lyman Alpha Emitters (LAEs) at z>6 is currently interpreted as an effect of the increasing neutral hydrogen density.
We present preliminary results from the latest VLT/FORS2 programs, combined with ESO archival data, to perform a large census of z ~ 6 galaxies. We derive their physical properties as stellar mass and dust attenuation with an SED fitting tool including nebular emission which is of primeval importance because IRAC channels are strongly contaminated by emission lines at those redshifts. We take a special care to derive with precision the redshift of non LAEs to perform a comparison of their properties with the LAE population and derive as accurately as possible the fraction of LAEs. In particular, we compare the UV beta slope with the Lyα equivalent width which are known to correlate at lower redshift.
We also report the detection of few peculiar z ~ 6 galaxies with extremely blue UV β slope (~−3), which can be a signature of unusual stellar populations (e.g., very hot and massive stars).