Hostname: page-component-797576ffbb-jhnrh Total loading time: 0 Render date: 2023-12-09T19:33:04.730Z Has data issue: false Feature Flags: { "corePageComponentGetUserInfoFromSharedSession": true, "coreDisableEcommerce": false, "useRatesEcommerce": true } hasContentIssue false

Preliminary survival and movement data for a declining population of Flesh-footed Shearwater Ardenna carneipes in Western Australia provides insights into marine threats

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  31 August 2018

Institute for Marine and Antarctic Studies, University of Tasmania, 20 Castray Esplanade, Battery Point, Tasmania 7004, Australia.
Deakin University, School of Life and Environmental Science, Centre for Integrative Ecology, Geelong, Victoria 3220, Australia.
Bird Group, Department of Life Sciences, The Natural History Museum, Akeman Street, Tring, Hertfordshire, HP23 6AP, UK.
*Author for correspondence; e-mail:


Seabirds face diverse threats on their breeding islands and while at sea. Human activities have been linked to the decline of seabird populations, yet over-wintering areas typically receive little or no protection. Adult survival rates, a crucial parameter for population persistence in long-lived species, tend to be spatially or temporally restricted for many seabird species, limiting our understanding of factors driving population trends at some sites. We used bio-loggers to study the migration of Western Australian Flesh-footed Shearwaters Ardenna carneipes carneipes and estimated adult survival over five years. Western Australia is home to around 35% of the world’s breeding Flesh-footed Shearwaters, a population which was up-listed to Vulnerable in 2015. During the austral winter, shearwaters migrated across the central Indian Ocean to their non-breeding grounds off western Sri Lanka. Low site fidelity on breeding islands, mortality of adult birds at sea (e.g. fisheries bycatch), and low annual breeding frequency likely contributed to the low estimated annual adult survival (2011–2015: ϕ = 0.634-0.835).

Short Communication
Copyright © BirdLife International 2018 

Access options

Get access to the full version of this content by using one of the access options below. (Log in options will check for institutional or personal access. Content may require purchase if you do not have access.)


Abdulali, H. and Grubh, R. B. (1982) Pink-footed Shearwater [Procellaria carneipes (Gould)] in India. J. Bombay Nat. Hist. Soc. 79: 666667.Google Scholar
Akaike, H. (1974) A new look at the statistical model identification. IEEE Trans. Automat. Contr. 19: 716723.10.1109/TAC.1974.1100705CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Anderson, O. R. J., Small, C. J., Croxall, J. P., Dunn, E. K., Sullivan, B. J., Yates, O. and Black, A. (2011) Global seabird bycatch in longline fisheries. Endangered Species Res. 14: 91106.10.3354/esr00347CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Artukhin, Y. B., Burkanov, V. N. and Nikulin, V. S. (2010) [Accidental bycatch of marine birds and mammals in the salmon gilnet fishery in the northwestern Pacific Ocean]. Moscow: Kamchatka Branch of the Pacific Geophysical Institute, Russian Academy of Sciences. (In Russian).Google Scholar
Ballance, L. T., Pitman, R. L., Reilly, S. B. and Force, M. P. (1996) Report of a cetacean, seabird, marine turtle and flying fish survey of the western tropical Indian Ocean aboard the research vessel Malcolm Baldrige, March 21-July 26, 1995. (NOAA Technical Memorandum). U.S. Department of Commerce.Google Scholar
Barbraud, C., Booth, A., Taylor, G. A. and Waugh, S. M. (2014) Survivorship in Flesh-footed Shearwater Puffinus carneipes at two sites in northen New Zealand. Mar. Ornithol. 42: 9197.Google Scholar
BirdLife International (2017) IUCN Red List for birds species factsheet: Ardenna carneipes. Downloaded from on 22/09/2017.Google Scholar
Bond, A. L. and Lavers, J. L. (2011) Trace element concentrations in feathers of Flesh-footed Shearwaters (Puffinus carneipes) from across their breeding range. Arch. Environ. Contam. Toxicol. 61: 318326.10.1007/s00244-010-9605-3CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
Bond, A. L., Jones, I. L., Williams, J. C. and Byrd, G. V. (2013) Survival and reproductive success of Crested Auklets (Aethia cristatella) in the presence of introduced Norway rats (Rattus norvegicus). Mar. Ornithol. 41: 4147.Google Scholar
Bond, A. L. and Lavers, J. L. (2014) Climate change alters the trophic niche of a declining apex marine predator. Global Change Biol. 20: 21002107.10.1111/gcb.12554CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
Brooke, M. d. L. (2004) Albatrosses and petrels across the world. Oxford, UK: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
Brothers, N. P., Reid, T. A. and Gales, R. P. (1997) At-sea distribution of Shy Albatrosses Diomedea cauta cauta derived from records of band recoveries and colour-marked birds. Emu 97: 231239.Google Scholar
Burnham, K. P. and Anderson, D. R. (2002) Model selection and multi-model inference. New York: Springer Science + Business Media.Google Scholar
Buxton, R. T., Currey, C. A., Lyver, P. O. B. and Jones, C. J. (2013) Incidence of plastic fragments among burrow-nesting seabird colonies on offshore islands in northern New Zealand. Mar. Pollut. Bull. 74: 420424.10.1016/j.marpolbul.2013.07.011CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
Campbell, O., Smiles, M., Roberts, H., Judas, J. and Pedersen, T. (2017) Gulf of Oman: analysis of seabird records of boat trips from the east coast of the United Arab Emirates 20I0-2016. Sandgrouse 39: 138164.Google Scholar
Carey, M. J. (2011) Investigator disturbance reduces reproductive success in Short-tailed Shearwaters Puffinus tenuirostris. Ibis 153: 363372.10.1111/j.1474-919X.2011.01109.xCrossRefGoogle Scholar
Catry, T., Ramos, J. A., Le Corre, M. and Phillips, R. A. (2009) Movements, at-sea distribution and behaviour of a tropical pelagic seabird: the Wedge-tailed Shearwater in the western Indian Ocean. Mar. Ecol. Prog. Ser. 391: 231242.10.3354/meps07717CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Chambers, L. E., Devney, C. A., Congdon, B. C., Dunlop, J. N., Woehler, E. J. and Dann, P. (2011) Observed and predicted effects of climate on Australian seabirds. Emu 111: 235251.10.1071/MU10033CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Chastel, O. (1995) Influence of reproductive success on breeding frequency in four southern petrels. Ibis 137: 360363.10.1111/j.1474-919X.1995.tb08033.xCrossRefGoogle Scholar
Chastel, O. (1995) Influence of reproductive success on breeding frequency in four southern petrels. Ibis 137: 360363.10.1111/j.1474-919X.1995.tb08033.xCrossRefGoogle Scholar
Choquet, R., Lebreton, J.-D., Gimenez, O., Reboulet, A.-M. and Pradel, R. (2009) U-CARE: Utilities for performing goodness of fit tests and manipulating CApture–REcapture data. Ecography 32: 10711074.10.1111/j.1600-0587.2009.05968.xCrossRefGoogle Scholar
Coll, M., Piroddi, C., Albouy, C., Ben Rais Lasram, F., Cheung, W. W. L., Christensen, V., Karpouzi, V. S., Guilhaumon, F., Mouillot, D., Paleczny, M., Palomares, M. L., Steenbeek, J., Trujillo, P., Watson, R. and Pauly, D. (2012) The Mediterranean Sea under siege: spatial overlap between marine biodiversity, cumulative threats and marine reserves. Global Ecol. Biogeogr. 21: 465480.10.1111/j.1466-8238.2011.00697.xCrossRefGoogle Scholar
Costello, M. J., Coll, M., Danovaro, R., Halpin, P., Ojaveer, H. and Miloslavich, P. (2010) A census of marine biodiversity knowledge, resources, and future challenges. PLoS One 5: e12110.10.1371/journal.pone.0012110CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
Croxall, J. P. P., Butchart, S. H. M., Lascelles, B., Stattersfield, A. J. J., Sullivan, B. J. J., Symes, A. and Taylor, P. (2012) Seabird conservation status, threats and priority actions: a global assessment. Bird Conserv. Internatn. 22: 134.10.1017/S0959270912000020CrossRefGoogle Scholar
De Silva, R. I. and Perera, L. (1995) Shearwater migration off the coast of Sri Lanka. Loris 20: 97100.Google Scholar
de Vos, A., Pattiaratchi, C. B. and Wijeratne, E. M. S. (2013) Surface circulation and upwelling patterns around Sri Lanka. Biogeosci. Discuss. 10: 1495314998.10.5194/bgd-10-14953-2013CrossRefGoogle Scholar
DeGange, A. R. and Day, R. H. (1991) Mortality of seabirds in the Japanese land-based gillney fishery for salmon. Condor 93: 251258.10.2307/1368940CrossRefGoogle Scholar
DPaW (2015) Wildlife conservation (specially protected fauna) notice 2015. (Government gazette of Western Australia). Perth: Department of Parks and Wildlife.Google Scholar
Dunlop, J. N. (2007) Protected species bycatch in Zone 1 of the South Coast Purse Seine Fishery 2010/11. Perth: Department of Environment and Conservation.Google Scholar
Dunlop, J. N., McNeill, S. and Cannell, B. (2013) Seabird feathers as indicators of mercury & selenium contamination in the coastal waters of south Western Australia. Perth: Conservation Council of Western Australia.Google Scholar
Felicísimo, Á. M., Muñoz, J. and González-Solis, J. (2008) Ocean surface winds drive dynamics of transoceanic aerial movements. PLoS One 3: e2928.10.1371/journal.pone.0002928CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
Finkelstein, M. E., Wolf, S., Goldman, M., Doak, D. F., Sievert, P. R., Balogh, G. and Hasegawa, H. (2010) The anatomy of a (potential) disaster: Volcanoes, behavior, and population viability of the Short-tailed Albatross (Phoebastria albatrus). Biol. Conserv. 143: 321331.10.1016/j.biocon.2009.10.013CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Fletcher, W. J. and Tregonning, R. J. (1992) Distribution and timing of spawning by the Australian pilchard (Sardinops sagax neopilchardus) off Albany, Western Australia. Mar. Freshwater Res. 43: 14371449.10.1071/MF9921437CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Gaze, P. (2000) The response of a colony of Sooty Shearwater (Puffinus griseus) and Flesh-footed Shearwater (P. carneipes) to the cessation of harvesting and the eradication of Norway rats (Rattus norvegicus). New Zealand J. Zool. 27: 375379.10.1080/03014223.2000.9518247CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Gibson-Hill, C. A. (1953) Notes on the sea birds of the orders Procellariformes and Pelecaniformes recorded as strays or visitors to the Ceylon coast. Spolia Zeylanica 27: 83201.Google Scholar
Grémillet, D. and Boulinier, T. (2009) Spatial ecology and conservation of seabirds facing global climate change: a review. Mar. Ecol. Prog. Ser. 391: 121137.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Hedd, A., Montevecchi, W. A., Otley, H., Phillips, R. A. and Fifield, D. A. (2012) Trans-equatorial migration and habitat use by Sooty Shearwaters Puffinus griseus from the South Atlantic during the nonbreeding season. Mar. Ecol. Prog. Ser. 449: 277290.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Huang, H.-W. and Liu, K.-M. (2010) Bycatch and discards by Taiwanese large-scale tuna longline fleets in the Indian Ocean. Fish Res. 106: 261270.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
IOTC (2015) Report of the 11th Session of the IOTC Working Party on Ecosystems and Bycatch, IOTC–2015–WPEB11–R[E]. Olhão, Portugal:Indian Ocean Tuna Commission.Google Scholar
Jones, I. L., Hunter, F. M. and Robertson, G. J. (2002) Annual adult survival of Least Auklets (Aves, Alcidae) varies with large-scale climatic conditions of the North Pacific Ocean. Oecologia 133: 3844.CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
Jones, I. L., Hunter, F. M. and Robertson, G. J. (2002) Annual adult survival of Least Auklets (Aves, Alcidae) varies with large-scale climatic conditions of the North Pacific Ocean. Oecologia 133: 3844.CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
Lavers, J. L. (2007) Cumulative mortality and population parameters for a vulnerable seabird. Chapter Seven: Populations under pressure. St. John’s, Newfoundland: Memorial University of Newfoundland.Google Scholar
Lavers, J. L. (2015) Population status and threats to Flesh-footed Shearwaters (Puffinus carneipes) in South and Western Australia. ICES J. Mar. Sci. 72: 316327.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Lavers, J. L., Bond, A. L., Van Wilgenburg, S. L. and Hobson, K. A. (2013) Linking at-sea mortality of a pelagic shearwater to breeding colonies of origin using biogeochemical markers. Mar. Ecol. Prog. Ser. 491: 265275.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Lavers, J. L., Bond, A. L. and Hutton, I. (2014a) Plastic ingestion by Flesh-footed Shearwaters (Puffinus carneipes): Implications for chick body condition and the accumulation of plastic-derived chemicals. Environ. Pollut. 187: 124129.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Lavers, J. L., Miller, M. G. R., Carter, M. J., Swann, G. and Clarke, R. H. (2014b) Predicting the spatial distribution of a seabird community to identify priority conservation areas in the Timor Sea. Conserv. Biol. 28: 16991709.CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
Le Bohec, C., Gauthier-Clerc, M., Gremillet, D., Pradel, R., Bechet, A., Gendner, J. P. and Le Maho, Y. (2007) Population dynamics in a long-lived seabird: I. Impact of breeding activity on survival and breeding probability in unbanded King Penguins. J. Anim. Ecol. 76: 11491160.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Lebreton, J. D., Burnham, K. P., Clobert, J. and Anderson, D. R. (1992) Modeling survival and testing biological hypotheses using marked animals: a unified approach with case studies. Ecol. Monogr. 62: 67118.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Lewison, R. L. and Crowder, L. B. (2003) Estimating fishery bycatch and effects on a vulnerable seabird population. Ecol. Applic. 13: 743753.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Lewison, R. L., Crowder, L. B., Read, A. J. and Freeman, S. A. (2004) Understanding impacts of fisheries bycatch on marine megafauna. Trends Ecol. Evol. 19: 598604.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Lisovski, S., Hewson, C. M., Klaassen, R. H. G., Korner-Nievergelt, F., Kristensen, M. W. and Hahn, S. (2012) Geolocation by light: Accuracy and precision affected by environmental factors. Methods Ecol. Evol. 3: 503612.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Louzao, M., Hyrenbach, K. D., Arcos, J. M., Abelló, P., de Sola, L. G. and Oro, D. (2006) Oceanographic habitat of an endangered Mediterranean procellariiform: implications for marine protected areas. Ecol. Applic. 16: 16831695.CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
Lunney, D., Curtin, A. L., Ayers, D., Cogger, H. G., Dickman, C. R., Maitz, W., Law, B. and Fisher, D. (2000) The threatened and non-threatened native vertebrate fauna of New South Wales: status and ecological attributes. Sydney: National Parks and Wildlife Service.Google Scholar
Marra, P. P., Cohen, E. B., Loss, S. R., Rutter, J. E. and Tonra, C. M. (2015) A call for full annual cycle research in animal ecology. Biol. Lett. 11: 20150552.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Mills, M. S. L. and Ryan, P. G. (2005) Modelling impacts of long-line fishing: what are the effects of pair-bond disruption and sex-biased mortality on albatross fecundity? Anim. Conserv. 8: 359367.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Mougin, J. L., Jouanin, C. and Roux, F. (1997) Intermittent breeding in Cory’s Shearwater Calonectris diomedea of Selvagem Grande, North Atlantic. Ibis 139: 4044.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Nezlin, N. P., Polikarpov, I. G. and Al-Yamani, F. (2007) Satellite-measured chlorophyll distribution in the Arabian Gulf: Spatial, seasonal and inter-annual variability. International J. Oceans Oceanol. 2: 139156.Google Scholar
Ogi, H. (2008) International and national problems in fisheries seabird by-catch. J. Disaster Res. 3: 187195.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Pocklington, R. (1979) An oceanographic interpretation of seabird distributions in the Indian Ocean. Mar. Biol. 51: 921.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Powell, C. D. L. (2009) Foraging movements and the migration trajectory of Flesh-footed Shearwaters Puffinus carneipes from the south coast of Western Australia. Mar. Ornithol. 37: 115120.Google Scholar
Powell, C. D. L., Wooller, R. D. and Bradley, J. S. (2007) Breeding biology of the Flesh-footed Shearwater (Puffinus carneipes) on Woody Island, Western Australia. Emu 107: 275283.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Pradel, R., Rioux, N., Tamisier, A. and Lebreton, J. D. (1997) Individual turnover among wintering teal in Camargue: A mark-recapture study. J. Wildl. Manage. 61: 816821.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Prasad, R. R. and Nair, P. V. R. (1960) A preliminary account of primary production and its relation to fisheries of the inshore waters of the Gulf of Mannar. Indian J. Fisheries 7: 165168.Google Scholar
Prévot-Julliard, A. C., Lebreton, J. D. and Pradel, R. (1998) Re-evaluation of adult survival of Black-Headed Gulls (Larus ridibundus) in presence of cecapture heterogeneity. The Auk 115: 8595.Google Scholar
Priddel, D., Carlile, N., Fullagar, P., Hutton, I. and O’Neill, L. (2006) Decline in the distribution and abundance of Flesh-footed Shearwaters (Puffinus carneipes) on Lord Howe Island, Australia. Biol. Conserv. 128: 412424.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Rayner, M. J., Taylor, G. A., Thompson, D. R., Torres, L. G., Sagar, P. M. and Shaffer, S. A. (2011) Migration and diving activity in three non-breeding Flesh-footed Shearwaters Puffinus carneipes. J. Avian Biol. 42: 266270.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Reid, T., Hindell, M. and Wilcox, C. (2012) Environmental determinants of the at-sea distribution of encounters between Flesh-footed Shearwaters Puffinus carniepes and fishing vessels. Mar. Ecol. Prog. Ser. 447: 231242.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Reid, T., Hindell, M., Lavers, J. L. and Wilcox, C. (2013a) Re-examining mortality sources and population trends in a declining seabird: using Bayesian methods to incorporate existing information and new data. PLoS One 8: e58230.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Reid, T., Tuck, G. N., Hindell, M. A., Thalmann, S., Phillips, R. A. and Wilcox, C. (2013b) Nonbreeding distribution of Flesh-footed Shearwaters and the potential for overlap with North Pacific fisheries. Biol. Conserv. 166: 310.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Richard, Y. and Abraham, E. R. (2013) Risk of commercial fisheries to New Zealand seabird populations. Wellington: New Zealand Aquatic Environment and Biodiversity Report No. 109.Google Scholar
Robertson, H. A., Dowding, J. E., Elliott, G. P., Hitchmough, R. A., Miskelly, C. M., O’Donnell, C. F. J., Powlesland, R. G., Sagar, P. M., Scofield, R. P. and Taylor, G. A. (2013) Conservation status of New Zealand birds, 2012. New Zealand Threat Classification Series 4. Wellington: Department of Conservation.Google Scholar
Spear, L. B. and Ainley, D. G. (1997) Flight speed of seabirds in relation to wind speed and direction. Ibis 139: 234251.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Sumner, M. D., Wotherspoon, S. J. and Hindell, M. A. (2009) Bayesian estimation of animal movement from archival and satellite tags. PLoS One 4: e7324.CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
Thalmann, S., Baker, G. B., Hindell, M., Double, M. C. and Gales, R. (2007) Using biometric measurements to determine gender of Flesh-footed Shearwaters, and their application as a tool in long-line by-catch management and ecological field studies. Emu 107: 231238.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Thompson, K. R. and Furness, R. W. (1991) The influence of rainfall and nest-site quality on the population dynamics of the Manx Shearwater Puffinus puffinus on Rhum. J. Zool. 225: 427437.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Tiller, C. J., Klomp, N. I., Fullagar, P. C, and Heyligers, P. J. (2013) Catastrophic breeding failure in shearwaters caused by heavy rainfall. Mar. Ornithol. 41: 9799.Google Scholar
Tuck, G. N. N., Polacheck, T. and Bulman, C. M. M. (2003) Spatio-temporal trends of longline fishing effort in the Southern Ocean and implications for seabird bycatch. Biol. Conserv. 114: 127.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Vinayachandran, P. N., Chauhan, P., Mohan, M. and Nayak, S. (2004) Biological response of the sea around Sri Lanka to summer monsoon. Geophys Res Lett 31: L01302–L01302.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Wahl, T. R. and Heinemann, D. (1969) Seabirds and fishing vessels: co-occurrence and attraction. Condor 81: 390396.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Warham, J. (1958) The nesting of the shearwater Puffinus carneipes. The Auk 75: 114.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Warham, J. (1990) The petrels: their ecology and breeding systems. London: Academic Press.Google Scholar
Waugh, S. M., MacKenzie, D. I. and Fletcher, D. (2008) Seabird bycatch in New Zealand trawl and longline fisheries, 1998-2004. Pap. Proc. R Soc. Tas. 142: 4566.Google Scholar
Waugh, S. M., Filippi, D. P., Kirby, D. S., Abraham, E. and Walker, N. (2012) Ecological Risk Assessment for seabird interactions in Western and Central Pacific longline fisheries. Marine Policy 36: 933946.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Waugh, S. M., Tennyson, A., Taylor, G. and Wilson, K.-J. (2013) Population sizes of shearwaters (Puffinus spp.) breeding in New Zealand, with recommendations for monitoring. Tuhinga 24: 159204.Google Scholar
Waugh, S. M., Jamieson, S. E., Stahl, J. C., Filippi, D. P., Taylor, G. A. and Booth, A. (2014) Flesh-footed Shearwater – population study and foraging areas (POP2011–02). Final report. Wellington, New Zealand.Google Scholar
Weimerskirch, H., Louzao, M., de Grissac, S. and Delord, K. (2012) Changes in wind pattern alter albatross distribution and life-history traits. Science 335: 211214.CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
White, G. C. and Burnham, K. P. (1999) Program MARK: survival estimation from populations of marked animals. Bird Study 46: S120S139.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Yonehara, Y., Goto, Y., Yoda, K., Watanuki, Y., Young, L. C., Weimerskirch, H., Bost, C.-A. and Sato, K. (2016) Flight paths of seabirds soaring over the ocean surface enable measurement of fine-scale wind speed and direction. Proc. Nat. Acad. Sci. 113: 90399044.CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
Supplementary material: File

Lavers et al. supplementary material

Lavers et al. supplementary material 1

Download Lavers et al. supplementary material(File)
File 179 KB