The Important Bird Area (IBA) programme is being extended to the oceans by refining the terrestrial criteria for identifying IBAs in order to capture aspects of seabird distribution.
The Important Bird Area (IBA) programme is being extended to the oceans. This requires a number of refinements to the criteria by which IBAs are identified and delimited, in order to capture four aspects of seabird distribution:
Analyses of existing datasets have shown that some 2,156 IBAs, across 159 countries and territories may be considered marine on the basis of the seabird breeding colonies they hold (Howgate and Lascelles 2007, analysis of data held in BirdLife’s World Bird Database). Data on foraging distances of seabirds are being compiled and, where possible, combined with data on habitat and topography, to provide guidance on establishing revised seaward boundaries for these sites, where appropriate. An example of how this approach is being developed is shown in the accompanying figure.
BirdLife International (2008) Important Bird Areas for the marine environment are being identified in many regions. Presented as part of the BirdLife State of the world's birds website. Available from: http://www.birdlife.org/datazone/sowb/casestudy/82. Checked: 25/05/2013
|Key message: Sites crucial for conserving birds - Important Bird Areas - have been identified in most countries|