Black-browed albatrosses, international fisheries and the Patagonian Shelf.

Grémillet, D., Wilson, Rory P., Wanless, S. and Chater, T. (2000) Black-browed albatrosses, international fisheries and the Patagonian Shelf. Open Access Marine Ecology Progress Series, 195 . pp. 269-280.

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Abstract

Albatrosses have among the most remarkable travelling capacities of any extant animal.
However, previous studies regarding their movements at sea have mainly focused on breeding birds commuting between the nest site and offshore feeding grounds. In this study, we compare the movement patterns and at-sea activity of breeding and inter-breeding black-browed albatrosses Diomedea melanophris from the Falkland Islands. Data were recorded via global location and activity sensors for 26 incubating birds [during single foraging trips lasting 6.8 d on average) and 6 inter-breeding individuals (during non-stop offshore journeys of 127.5 d on average). Our results showed that foraging black-browed albatrosses utilise vast offshore areas (the average foraging area was 102000 +_
132 000 km2 by incubating birds and 1552 000 * 970 000 km2 by inter-breeding birds). However, mean forag~ngr ange was similar in both groups (691 * 330 km and 680 t 192 km by incubating and interbreeding birds, respectively) as were their core foraging areas and their at-sea activity patterns. Our results thus indicate that black-browed albatrosses from the Falkland Islands, which represent the largest albatross population world-wide (ca 800 000 individuals), mainly rely on marine resources available within the Patagonian Shelf area. Although this hghly productive continental shelf is the largest
of the Southern Hemisphere, rapid development of industrial fisheries currently results in the removal of over 1.4 million tonnes of fish and squid per year in this zone. As our data also show significant spatio-temporal overlap between human and albatross fishing activities within the Patagonian Shelf, we anticipate major detrimental effects on the albatross population in terms of competition for food and additional mortality caused by bird bycatch.

Document Type: Article
Research affiliation: OceanRep > Institute for Marine Science Kiel
Refereed: Yes
Open Access Journal?: No
ISSN: 0171-8630
Date Deposited: 18 Feb 2008 17:24
Last Modified: 25 May 2018 10:52
URI: http://oceanrep.geomar.de/id/eprint/5903

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