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Providing evidence to improve practice

Action: Use acoustic alerts on gillnets to reduce seabird bycatch Bird Conservation

Key messages

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A repeated, randomised and controlled trial in the USA found that sonic alerts reduced the number of common guillemots Uria aalge but not rhinoceros auklets Cerorhinca monocerata caught in gillnets.


Supporting evidence from individual studies


A repeated, randomised and controlled trial in a drift gillnet fishery in North Puget Sound, Washington, USA, in July and August 1996 (Melvin et al. 1999), found that nets fitted with acoustic alerts (‘pingers’) caught significantly fewer common guillemots (common murres) Uria aalge than control nets (0.31 vs. 0.60 entanglements/net). There was no significant change in the number of rhinoceros auklets Cerorhinca monocerata caught. A total of eight boats and 321 net sets were studied.


Referenced papers

Please cite as:

Williams, D.R., Child, M.F., Dicks, L.V., Ockendon, N., Pople, R.G., Showler, D.A., Walsh, J.C., zu Ermgassen, E.K.H.J. & Sutherland, W.J. (2019) Bird Conservation. Pages 141-290 in: W.J. Sutherland, L.V. Dicks, N. Ockendon, S.O. Petrovan & R.K. Smith (eds) What Works in Conservation 2019. Open Book Publishers, Cambridge, UK.