Agreement on the Conservation of Albatrosses and Petrels

Progress with the international management of fish stocks (and seabirds?) in the South Pacific

The South Pacific Regional Fisheries Management Organisation (SPRFMO) entered into force on 24 August last year (click here).

The SPRFMO is an international organisation responsible for the conservation and management of non‐highly migratory fishery resources in the South Pacific.  The Secretariat of the Commission for the SPRFMO is headquartered in Wellington, New Zealand.

Conservation and management measures to be adopted by the Commission are to include measures "to maintain or restore populations of non-target and associated or dependent species to above levels at which their reproduction may become seriously threatened".  The Convention text also allows for defining "the types of fishing gear, fishing technology, or fishing practices which may be used when fishing", which will presumably allow for the deployment of bird mitigation measures, such as bird-scaring lines where considered desirable.

The first meeting of the Commission took place in Auckland, New Zealand from 28 January to 1 February 2013.  Click here for its final report.  The first meeting of the SPRFMO’s Scientific Committee will be held in La Jolla, California, USA over 21-27 October 2013.

At its first meeting the Scientific Committee will, inter alia:

Review … international best practices in bycatch and incidental catches (seabirds, marine mammals and reptiles) and mitigation options in pelagic and bottom fisheries; and

Review the standards for data collection and reporting, and for observer coverage to ensure a full understanding of the nature and extent of bycatch interactions across all fisheries. (click here for the provisional agenda).

The second meeting of the Commission will be held in Manta, Ecuador over 27-31 January 2014.

The Commission is now inviting applications for the position of Executive Secretary.  The Executive Secretary will be responsible for the management and supervision of the Secretariat and the provision of advice to the Commission.  The appointment is for a term of four years, with the possibility of an additional four-year appointment.

Applications must be addressed to the Chairperson and sent no later than 15 October 2013 in electronic format to: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..  For further information (and to view the full advert) applicants should consult the SPRFMO website.

John Cooper, ACAP Information Officer, 24 August 2013