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New: Seabird conservation status, threats and priority actions: a global assessment

Fern Davies

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Paper can be accessed here:




The summary:





We review the conservation status of, and threats to, all 346 species of seabirds, based on BirdLife

International’s data and assessments for the 2010 IUCN Red List. We show that overall, seabirds are

more threatened than other comparable groups of birds and that their status has deteriorated faster

over recent decades. The principal current threats at sea are posed by commercial fisheries (through

competition and mortality on fishing gear) and pollution, whereas on land, alien invasive predators,

habitat degradation and human disturbance are the main threats. Direct exploitation remains

a problem for some species both at sea and ashore. The priority actions needed involve: a) formal and

effective site protection, especially for Important Bird Area (IBA) breeding sites and for marine IBA

feeding and aggregation sites, as part of national, regional and global networks of Marine Protected

Areas; b) removal of invasive, especially predatory, alien species (a list of priority sites is provided),

as part of habitat and species recovery initiatives; and c) reduction of bycatch to negligible levels, as

part of comprehensive implementation of ecosystem approaches to fisheries. The main knowledge

gaps and research priorities relate to the three topics above but new work is needed on impacts of

aquaculture, energy generation operations and climate change (especially effects on the distribution

of prey species and rise in sea level). We summarise the relevant national and international

jurisdictional responsibilities, especially in relation to endemic and globally threatened species



Supplementary materials:


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