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    Review of CCAMLR activities on monitoring marine debris in the Convention Area

    Request Meeting Document
    Document Number:
    SC-CAMLR-XXV/BG/09
    Author(s):
    Secretariat
    Agenda Item(s)
    Abstract

    The current status of national surveys on monitoring of marine debris and their impact on marine mammals and seabirds in the Convention Area has been reviewed. The CCAMLR Marine Debris Database contains data from 12 sites, most within Area 48. There are 4 sites that have data for more than 3 consecutive years, these are: Cape Shirreff, (Livingston Island, South Shetland Islands); Bird Island, (South Georgia); Signy Island, (South Orkney Islands), and King George Island, (South Shetland Islands).
    Marine debris, principally packaging items, fishing gear, and wood items, reached a peak in the period 1994-1996 at Bird Island and Signy Island, but have declined. The number of debris items found had increased in 2004 (Bird Island) and 2005 (Signy Island and King George Island), but has since declined again at Bird Island (2005), Signy Island (2006) and King George Island (2006). The majority of items found were packaging materials and wood.
    The level of marine debris found in grey-headed albatross, black-browed albatross colonies in 2006 has remained low. Debris from wandering albatross colonies at Bird Island in 2006 has increased by 41.2%. Fishing gear such as lines and hooks and miscellaneous broken plastics continue to form the major part of the debris associated with seabird colonies.
    The number of Antarctic fur seal entanglements at Bird Island reached a peak in 1993 and has showed a general decline since, with the lowest levels on record being reported for the 2005 season. This increased to 10 entanglements in the 2006 season, five of which were by packaging bands. The number of seabirds contaminated with hydrocarbons remains low.