Analysis of albatross and petrel distribution within the CCAMLR Convention Area: results from the Global Procellariiform Tracking Database
CCAMLR has implemented successful measures to reduce the incidental mortality of seabirds in most of the fisheries within its jurisdiction, and has done so through area-specific risk assessments linked to mandatory use of measures to reduce or eliminate incidental mortality, as well as through measures aimed at reducing illegal, unreported and unregulated (IUU) fishing. This paper presents an analysis of the distribution of albatrosses and petrels in the CCAMLR Convention Area to inform the CCAMLR risk-assessment process. Albatross and petrel distribution is analysed in terms of its division into FAO areas, subareas, divisions and subdivisions, based on remote-tracking data contributed to the Global Procellariiform Tracking Database by multiple data holders. The results highlight the importance of the Convention Area, particularly for breeding populations of wandering, grey-headed, light-mantled, black-browed and sooty albatross, and populations of northern and southern giant petrel, white-chinned petrel and short-tailed shearwater. Overall, the subareas with the highest proportion of albatross and petrel breeding distribution were Subareas 48.3 and 58.6, adjacent to the southwest Atlantic Ocean and southwest Indian Ocean, but albatross and petrel breeding ranges extend across the majority of the Convention Area. Subareas with the lowest proportion of breeding distribution were Subareas 88.2 and 88.3. The distribution data also emphasise the importance for breeding albatrosses and petrels of regions north of the CCAMLR boundaries, particularly including areas managed by CCSBT, ICCAT, IOTC and WCPFC. Priority gaps in current tracking data are identified, especially relating to studies of nonbreeding distribution. These data will be essential for comprehensive assessment of risks of incidental mortality for albatrosses and petrels foraging in the Convention Area.