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Providing evidence to improve practice

Action: Mark trawler warp cables to reduce seabird collisions Bird Conservation

Key messages

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A replicated, controlled study in Argentina found that seabird mortality from collisions with trawler warp cables was much lower when the cables were marked.


Supporting evidence from individual studies


A replicated and controlled study in Golfo San Jorge, Argentina between December 2004 and April 2005 (González-Zevallos et al. 2007) found that there were significantly fewer seabird collisions with warp cables during net-hauling activities (and cable-related mortality was nil) when an orange-coloured plastic traffic cone was attached to each cable (average of 5.4 contacts/haul and no mortalities in 12 hauls) compared with when cones were not used (average of 58.5 contacts/haul and a total of 11 mortalities in ten hauls). Trials were on three commercial trawlers using cones 1 m long and 20-10 cm in diameter. Mortalities were eight kelp gulls Larus dominicanus and three black-browed albatross Thalassarche melanophrys.


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.