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    Distribution of albatrosses and petrels in the WCPFC Convention Area and overlap with WCPFC longline fishing effort

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    Document Number:
    WG-FSA-06/19
    Author(s):
    C. Small (BirdLife International)
    Agenda Item(s)
    Abstract

    This paper presents an analysis of the distribution of albatrosses and petrels in the area under the jurisdiction of the Western and Central Pacific Fisheries Commission (WCPFC), using data from the BirdLife Global Procellariiform Tracking Database.
    • The WCPFC area includes 41% of the global breeding distribution of albatrosses and petrels.
    • Albatross distribution is concentrated north of 20ºN and south of 30ºS.
    • WCPFC longline fisheries set approximately 100 million hooks each year north of 20ºN and below 30ºS, representing 16% of WCPFC’s total longline fishing effort.
    • Some species spend a significant proportion (>40%) of their time in high seas areas. Key high seas areas include the Tasman Sea and areas north of the Hawaiian Islands. The distribution in high seas areas emphasises the importance of WCPFC in bringing about a collaborative approach to reducing seabird bycatch.
    • Few tracking data are available for giant-petrels, petrels and shearwaters in the WCPFC area. Range maps indicate that several, including species known to be vulnerable to bycatch, have ranges that span the tropical Pacific

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