Agreement on the Conservation of Albatrosses and Petrels

Marine animal tracking data (including from albatrosses) can inform conservation policy and management

Graeme Hays (Deakin University, Geelong, Victoria, Australia) and many colleagues have published in the journal Trends in Ecology and Evolution on the value of marine animal tracking, including of pelagic seabirds, to inform conservation policy.  Included in the case studies is the contribution of albatross tracking data to various initiatives (such as those undertaken by ACAP) to reduce seabird bycatch in fisheries.

The paper’s abstract follows:

“There have been efforts around the globe to track individuals of many marine species and assess their movements and distribution, with the putative goal of supporting their conservation and management. Determining whether, and how, tracking data have been successfully applied to address real-world conservation issues is, however, difficult. Here, we compile a broad range of case studies from diverse marine taxa to show how tracking data have helped inform conservation policy and management, including reductions in fisheries bycatch and vessel strikes, and the design and administration of marine protected areas and important habitats. Using these examples, we highlight pathways through which the past and future investment in collecting animal tracking data might be better used to achieve tangible conservation benefits.”

Wandering Albatross at sea, photograph by Kirk Zufelt

With thanks to Richard Phillips.


Hays, G.C. et al. 2019.  Translating marine animal tracking data into conservation policy and management.  Trends in Ecology and Evolution

John Cooper, ACAP Information Officer, 12 April 2019