How to Use This Website
To help you get started using the website, we've prepared a quick-start guide and three video tutorials. There is also a lot of help information on this page.
Quickstart and Tutorials
|Video Tutorial: Map Environment||Video Tutorial: Explore by Species||Video Tutorial: Interpretation|
One component of sustainable fishing is reducing and mitigating bycatch, including seabird bycatch. The number of seabirds bycaught in a particular fishery depends on a number of factors, including behavior of the seabird species, and therefore how the seabirds will interact with the gear you use. For example, if you were to consider a colonial-breeding, diurnal, surface-feeding seabird species and demersal longline gear, it would likely be most at risk near its colonies, during the day and when bait is hauled or set. This behavioral and ecological information, which we have assembled here for each species, will help you determine a selection of mitigation methods.
To identify bycatch reduction and mitigation methods for the specific situation in your fishery, follow these steps:
- Identify the key species of seabirds in your fishery area that will be most important for reduction of bycatch. These may be Endangered, Threatened, or Protected (ETP) species, or species with very low population size, or those with very high likelihood of bycatch. Usually, there will be more than one key seabird species in a fishery area. The map tool is designed to deliver this information quickly. Here's a Quick-start Guide to using the map tool. Our video tutorial for the Map Environment might also help.
- Draw your area of interest (your fishery) on the map, using the Draw tool, or import a shapefile of your fishery onto the map.
- Next, select the Bird List tool, and click on your fishery. This produces list of the birds known from that area in the results window.
- You can sort the columns of the results window (by clicking at the top of the column on the column heading) to see, for example, which species are considered Endangered by IUCN, or which have known, documented bycatch, or which have small populations.
- To see a species' distribution around the world on the map, click on the button in the Display column.
- Choose which species you want to see a full report on, and whether to include a map in the report, by marking the checkboxes in the Include Species and Include Maps columns.
- Get your report by clicking on the Summary Report or Comprehensive Report buttons at the bottom of the results window.
- Once you have identified the key seabirds for bycatch reduction in your fishery, follow the next two steps.
- Consider non-gear-specific mitigation methods, those which are effective regardless of gear type. These bycatch reduction methods may include area or seasonal fishing closures, for example. These methods reduce bycatch regardless of which gear is used.
- Evaluate the choice of mitigation methods that are specific to your gear type. The method you will need to use will depend on the seabirds in your fishery: a bottom-set gillnet poses very different risk to a surface feeder or shallow diving seabird than it does to a deep-diving seabird.
There are many more sources of information on seabirds and seabird bycatch issues and mitigation elsewhere in this website, especially on the Resources pages.