Agreement on the Conservation of Albatrosses and Petrels

The Critically Endangered Balearic Shearwater gets a guardian

The Balearic Shearwater Puffinus mauretanicus is expected to be listed within the Albatross and Petrel Agreement next year, the first shearwater to be so included (click here).  This Critically Endangered Mediterranean endemic now has a "Species Guardian" to help improve its conservation status.

Sociedad Española de Ornitología (SEO) and Sociedade Portuguesa para o Estudo das Aves (SPEA), BirdLife International partners in Portugal and Spain, respectively, have taken up the task as set out in the December 2010 on-line issue of the Species Guardian Action Update for the bird.

Balearic Shearwater at its Spanish breeding site
Photograph by Daniel Oro

The update describes five conservation actions being undertaken as summarized here:

1.      Wintering and passage distribution is being monitored via aerial and oceanographic surveys, revealing hotspots.

2.      One thousand copies of a best-practice guide for fishers, with information on bycatch and seabirds, have been produced

3.      Coordinated efforts to estimate the global population size are underway.

4.      Research is underway on mortality in longline fisheries.

5.      The first inventory of marine Important Bird Areas (IBAs) in Portugal was published in 2008, identifying important areas for Balearic Shearwaters (click here to access the publication).

Click here to read the BirdLife Species Guardians Information Factsheet.

John Cooper, ACAP Information Officer, 13 September 2011