Invasive rats and cats eating seabird eggs and chicks, accidental entanglement in fish gear, exotic plants changing island ecology…just some of the things SPEA (BirdLife Portugal) has been battling to try and save seabirds.
Seabirds across Europe are in trouble and lines on maps will not bring them back alone. But effective management of protected areas can give them a fighting chance to claw, peck and soar their way back up the slippery slope…away from extinction.
Our seas are becoming warmer and acidified, extreme weather events are whipping them into a turbulent frenzy. European seabirds are in trouble, but Natura 2000 may offer a much needed haven to help them cope with this onslaught.
After years of political dogfight there finally seems to be hope for the Western Scheldt estuary in the Netherlands, a partly enclosed coastal body of brackish water with multiple streams flowing into it, and with a free connection to the open sea.
The European Commission has made a step in retargeting EU fisheries subsidies towards sustainable fishing and supporting marine life and ecosystems, while increasing transparency and conditionality of the fund.