Seabirds and Marine - Asia

Japanese Murrelet. Photo: Yoshiharu Suzuki
Japanese Murrelet. Photo: Yoshiharu Suzuki

The BirdLife Partnership works with governments, regional fisheries management organisations, international conventions and fishing fleets around the world to reduce seabird mortality through fishing “bycatch”, which has made seabirds the most threatened of all groups of bids. BirdLife Partners have also been engaged in mapping the most important marine areas (including coastal waters and the high seas) for seabirds. More than 3000 marine Important Bird and Biodiversity Areas have so far been recognised, the largest network of sites of importance for marine biodiversity.

The BirdLife Asia Partnership works through BirdLife’s Global Seabird Programme to advocate the adoption of seabird bycatch mitigation measures by all the longline fishing fleets which operate, or have their national bases in, the region. The Partnership is also gathering data on the impact of gillnet fishing on Alcids such as Japanese Murrelet Synthliboramphus wumizusume by fisheries operating in Asian waters, or originating from Asian countries

A series of national workshops were held by BirdLife Partners to launch the marine IBA identification programme. An initial list of candidate marine IBAs has now been compiled for all relevant countries in Asia, and BirdLife’s Partners are working to ensure that they are included in national and international networks of protected areas.