Seabird champions meet in Vietnam

April 19, 2017

Edward Abraham represented New Zealand at a workshop aimed at combining efforts to reduce seabird bycatch in the world’s tuna fisheries. Held in Hoi An, this was the second pre-assessment workshop organised by BirdLife South Africa, one of the partners of the Common Oceans ABNJ Tuna Project.

“BirdLife have organised a process where the countries that fish for tuna bring their data and contribute to the analysis together. Their goal is to understand how many birds are being caught and the effectiveness of the mitigations being used.”

Ed says the workshop was about upskilling people around seabird bycatch data, including data collection, processing and analysis.

“We’ve got extremely good data on our fisheries and seabirds in New Zealand region. People were interested in that as well as the risk assessment approach we use.”

He was also excited to work on the bycatch issue with an international group, which included representatives from Japan, China, Taiwan, Indonesia, Australia and South Africa.

“Our country’s a breeding ground, but our birds fly off and feed all over the world. They can get hooked out there, so we can't restrict our work to New Zealand’s EEZ. It was exciting to have the opportunity to work on this problem offshore and my key hope is that some good collaboration comes out of it – we’re now progressing that.”

The trip also included a birding trip to the mountains with an expert local guide and learning some local history. In the evening, pedestrianised streets were lit by vibrant LED displays.

See a case study about our risk assessment work or read more about the BirdLife workshop.