Body size effects and rates of cytochrome b evolution in tube-nosed seabirds. Molecular Biology and Evolution Onley, D.
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Albatrosses, Petrels and Shearwaters of the World. Princeton Field Guides. Warham, J. Academic Press, New York. Page: Tree of Life Pelecanoididae. Diving Petrels. Note that images and other media featured on this page are each governed by their own license, and they may or may not be available for reuse. Click on an image or a media link to access the media data window, which provides the relevant licensing information.
New York: G. Putnam's Sons. Close Alexander , Tuck, G. A Field Guide to the seabirds of Britain and the world. London: Collins. Close Tuck and Heinzel Members of the family Procellariidae, which also contains the shearwaters and the fulmars, Dark-rumped Petrels are often called gadfly petrels because of their erratic, swooping flight behavior at sea. The 25 species of gadfly petrels in the genus Pterodroma are most commonly found in tropical and subtropical zones, where they feed primarily on squid, fish, and crustaceans caught near the sea surface at night.
Historically a common breeding seabird in the Hawaiian Islands, its populations were decimated, initially by Polynesians who prized the birds as a delicacy, and more recently by predators that were introduced during the past centuries. The Galapagos Islands subspecies P.
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The Behaviour, Population Biology and Physiology of the Petrels | Notornis and Birds New Zealand
Close Coulter We assembled 38 petrel conservation researchers to summarize information regarding the most important threats according to the IUCN Red List of threatened species to identify knowledge gaps that must be filled to improve conservation and management of petrels. We highlight research advances on the main threats for petrels invasive species at breeding grounds, bycatch, overfishing, light pollution, climate change, and pollution.
We propose an ambitious goal to reverse at least some of these six main threats, through active efforts such as restoring island habitats e. Humans have transformed ecosystems on an unprecedented global scale, driving a growing number of species to decline and extinction Jenkins, The increasing human population living along coasts is putting a severe burden on marine and coastal environments through urban development, infrastructure for energy production and transport, fisheries, eutrophication, ocean acidification and invasion by alien species Barnosky et al. Thus, it is not surprising that seabird populations have declined faster than other bird taxa during last decades Croxall et al.
Seabirds are top predators and a significant component of marine ecosystems, making them key indicators of marine ecosystem functioning including climate change. Changes and fluctuations in seabird population sizes, ranges, foraging ecology and breeding success have been used to detect environmental changes, document direct threats e.
They are one of the most adapted groups of seabirds to the marine environment, traveling long distances and spending most of their lives over vast open oceans. Figure 1. Petrels are colonial, nesting in cavities, crevices and burrows predominantly on isolated and inaccessible islands; most visit their colonies at night Brooke, a. These habits are thought to be mainly an attempt to avoid predation and piracy Martin, These cryptic behaviors combined with their relative small size and high mobility at sea make petrels one of the most poorly known seabird groups, although some shearwater species are well studied.
They are highly adapted to exploit the marine environment and to cope with stable biological communities on breeding habitats Brooke, a. However, the exponential increase of the human population has resulted in stress and habitat transformation throughout natural petrel ecosystems.
The poor conservation status of many petrel species BirdLife International, a , the importance of some as biodindicators van Franeker and Law, and their regular role as keystone species in ecosystems Brooke, b have resulted in many becoming flagships for research and conservation by both professional and citizen scientists. Here, we take advantage of the experiences of seabird scientists working on petrels all over the world to review and synthesize threats that need to be addressed in future research, identify information gaps, and propose the most critical research needs to improve the conservation and management of petrels including shearwaters, diving petrels, and storm-petrels.
We based this review on the petrel species from three families of Order Procellariiformes: Procellariidae including diving petrels Pelecanoides , Oceanitidae, and Hydrobatidae BirdLife International, a and on the expertise of 38 petrel researchers from 34 institutions from 10 countries. We also used data from the BirdLife International Data Zone 1 compiled and regularly updated by BirdLife Partners, scientists, ornithologists, conservationists and birdwatchers.
The assessment of threats followed the threat classification scheme of the IUCN Each of the known threats were broken down into sections and written by groups of two to seven experts, showcasing impacts and potential solutions to the problems facing petrels worldwide.
These threats were ordered in the text by the number of species affected according to the BirdLife International database Figure 2. Some sections may overlap slightly given the multiple impacts of some activities. In addition, we comment on two aspects we consider crucial for petrel conservation: improved understanding of petrel biology and ecology, and the role of an accurate taxonomy to develop taxon lists for conservation. Figure 2. Threats to petrels sorted by the number of species affected according to BirdLife International a.
Table 1. Impact scoring system of each threat for species following the methodology of Garnett et al. Invasive species are non-native organisms whose introduction causes significant environmental harm.
Invasive mammals are the most harmful of all threats to petrels Figure 2. For some species, this threat is ongoing, high in scope and severity, and causing very rapid population declines, affecting several species across their entire range. Invasive mammals impact at least 78 petrel species, a critical contributing factor in all four species classified as extinct or possibly extinct since Large St Helena Petrel Pterodroma rupinarum , Small St Helena Petrel Bulweria bifax , Jamaican Petrel P.
Predation by invasive mammals — including by mice, rats, cats, pigs, and dogs — is a crucial threat, mainly where adult mortality occurs, driving colony extirpations, population declines and ultimately a higher risk of extinction.
Rats Rattus norvegicus, R. Rats can prey on eggs, chicks, and adults, the relative severity depending on the size classes of the petrel. House mice Mus musculus have only recently been recognized as significant seabird predators — mainly of chicks and seldom adults — typically on islands where they are the only invasive mammal Wanless et al. Mice currently threaten at least six endangered or critically endangered petrel species. Cats Felis catus , both feral and free-ranging, or domestic and subsidized by humans, can also be significant predators of adult seabirds and chicks, including multiple threatened species Bonnaud et al.
Figure 3. Number of petrel species Procellariidae, Oceanitidae, and Hydrobatidae families affected by introduced mammalian species according to BirdLife International database. Introduced herbivores, including lagomorphs and ungulates, represent a threat primarily through destruction of breeding habitat, including alteration or trampling of burrows, compaction of soil, loss of vegetation leading to substrate instability and erosion both of which can cause mortality for birds in burrows , or competition with petrels for burrows Brodier et al. Ungulates and pigs can also depredate petrels Furness, ; Madeiros et al.
Invasive invertebrates, plants, and birds can also present threats to petrel populations. Invasive tramp ants can be particularly damaging, e. Invasive plants can threaten breeding habitat by changing vegetation structure, limiting access to burrows, or entangling individuals leading to injury or death, e. Raptors introduced to islands have contributed to non-native predation and mortality, such as Masked Owl Tyto novaehollandiae predation on Little Shearwaters P.
Invasive species can also induce indirect threats on petrels by affecting island ecosystems, including changes in community composition or trophic interactions among introduced and native species Russell, An example is the case of invasive mice, overwintering Burrowing Owls Athene cunicularia and threatened Ashy Storm-Petrels Hydrobates homochroa on the Farallon Islands. One of the most effective conservation actions has been the eradication of invasive species from islands. The growth rate for many petrel populations is faster than the biological limit, indicating that recruitment of new breeders to these islands may play a key role in the re-establishment of some populations after an eradication Harper, ; Smith et al.
Some important petrel breeding islands are not considered technically or socio-politically feasible to implement eradications due to their size or human population. Alternative conservation strategies to mitigate invasive mammals include sub-island actions such as predator-proof fencing to create predator-free environments, and localized control to reduce but not eliminate threats Spatz et al. The most critical future action remains to tackle the threat of invasive mammals, coupled with improved biosecurity for pest-free islands Spatz et al.
In many jurisdictions this requires strengthening of legislation and adequate resource allocation for monitoring and enforcement. Eradicating invasive mammals wherever technically feasible is key. Many suitable islands occur in countries and territories with limited precedent e.
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Eradicating and controlling invasive mammals from human-settled islands is a critical new conservation frontier for protecting several globally threatened species e. This requires consideration of new technical challenges, such as commensal food waste, ensuring safe water supply, etc. As a result, strong local partnerships are required to understand social acceptability and alignment with community goals Glen et al.
Continued research and application of other restoration tools, including predator-proof fencing and reintroductions, invasive plant management, habitat restoration, and artificial nest construction, are required to protect remnant colonies on islands, and to achieve gains in efficacy and efficiency of pest control Kappes and Jones, Improved reporting of conservation outcomes and knowledge transfer among seabird practitioners remains a key recommendation, including workshops, exchange programs, online databases and reporting in open access media.
Investment in transformative innovations are also required Campbell et al. The use of artificial light at night, and the consequent increasing light pollution, is a major threat to biodiversity worldwide Kyba et al. Light attraction and disorientation is a very well-documented behavior of petrels across the world, including coastal and insular communities Reed et al.
Impacts are particularly evident on islands with human communities, with fledglings affected during maiden flights to sea, especially during darker moon phases Telfer et al. The increase in the number of grounded birds is often linked to an increase in light pollution levels of coastal areas Rodrigues et al. Conservation actions include avoidance turn off lights, part night lighting and minimization limit number of lights, shield lights, and prevent skyward light spill during fledging periods in high-risk areas Reed et al.
Rescue campaigns recover a proportion of affected fledglings each year, though there is little data on post-release survivorship. Priority actions for future research include 1 testing avoidance and minimization measures at affected sites via education, light ordinance and enforcement, 2 investigating light characteristics e.
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Procellariiformes are among the most caught groups, particularly albatrosses, but medium-size and large petrels also are affected, including several threatened species Anderson et al. Diving abilities, foraging and social behavior, species size, and prey preferences are among the main factors influencing bycatch risk.
Medium to large species foraging gregariously appear to be the most widely affected. The type of gear and the particularities of each fishery are also critical Lewison et al. Demersal longline fisheries, which use relatively small hooks and bait, may be particularly dangerous for medium-sized petrels Laneri et al.