Agreement on the Conservation of Albatrosses and Petrels

Several recent outreach initiatives to New Zealand commercial and recreational fishers aim to save seabirds

Several recent  initiatives in New Zealand are designed to help reduce incidental seabird mortality by both commercial and recreational fishers. 

The Protected Species Handbook for Inshore Vessels has been sponsored by the New Zealand Seafood Industry Council and aims "to assist those in the commercial sector operating inshore vessels by providing information on protected species and possible courses of action through mitigation methods and industry best practice principles".  It usefully lists regulations and circulars that create mandatory requirements for seabird mitigation measures in New Zealand.


Endemic ACAP-listed species of New Zealand: Chatham Albatross
Photograph by Matt Charteris

The Ocean Guardian newsletter (the first issue is dated January 2012) set to appear four times a year is funded by the New Zealand Department of Conservation (DOC) as part of the Marine Conservation Services Programme and is edited by Johanna Pierre.  The newsletter focuses on marine protected species and bycatch mitigation.  To be placed on the mailing list contact ocean_guardian@yahoo.com.


Endemic ACAP-listed species of New Zealand: Westland Petrel
Photograph by Barry Baker

The Southern Seabird Solutions Trust has been engaging in several outreach activities of late, including organizing and holding "Seabird Smart" workshops with commercial fishers, running its International Mitigation Mentor Programme and searching for new mitigation methods, including keeping seabirds away from the baited hooks of recreational fishers (click here).  Useful advice is provided in a Safe Seabird Release leafletClick here to access all of the SSST's current projects.


Endemic ACAP-listed species of New Zealand: Campbell Albatross
Photograph by Aleks Terauds 

Albert Times, a monthly newsletter written by the pseudonymous "Admiral Albert Ross - MBE (Mighty Big Eater)" aims "to better inform, [sic] both fishing industry participants and interested parties of importance, on minimising the interactions between seabirds and fishing vessels."  The humorous newsletter (it carries great cartoons by Daryl Crimp) is produced by Clement & Associates, Ltd.

Reference:

[Challenger Finfish Management Company] 2011.  Protected Species Handbook for Inshore Vessels.  A Resource for Inshore Vessel Operators.  [Nelson]: Challenger Finfish Management Company.  80 pp.  ISBN 978-0-473-17907-6. http://www.seafoodindustry.co.nz/n464,61.html

With thanks to Corinne Bennik, New Zealand Seafood Industry Council Ltd and Johanna Pierre of Johanna Pierre Environmental Consulting Ltd for information.

John Cooper, ACAP Information Officer, 24 December 2011