Progress Report on the Development of a Seabird Identification Guide for use by tRFMOs
At the first meeting of the Joint Tuna RFMO Technical Working Group on Bycatch in July 2011, ACAP offered to develop a standardised seabird identification guide to assist with the harmonisation of data collection across the RFMOs. ACAP has been working with the Japanese National Research Institute of Far Seas Fisheries (NRIFSF) to produce a draft photo identification guide for seabird bycatch for use by observers at sea. The draft guide primarily uses head and bill characteristics and includes photos of dead seabirds caught as bycatch in longline fisheries to facilitate fast and accurate identification. This paper provides an update on progress and seeks expert input from WCPFC SC9 and the Coordinators of relevant observer programmes.