Breeding tropical shearwaters use distant foraging sites when self-provisioning

McDuie, Fiona, Weeks, Scarla J., Miller, Mark G.R., and Congdon, Bradley C. (2015) Breeding tropical shearwaters use distant foraging sites when self-provisioning. Marine Ornithology, 43. pp. 123-129.

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To determine whether breeding tropical shearwaters use "at-distance" locations during the long-trip phase of their bimodal foraging cycle,we deployed PTT satellite trackingdevices on adult Wedge-tailed Shearwaters Ardenna pacifica of the Great Barrier Reef (GBR), Australia, over three breeding seasons. During the long-trip phase (8–14 d), a component of a bimodal pattern of foraging not seen previously in a tropical shearwater, birds travelled to distant sites in the Coral Sea between 300 and 1 100 km from the breeding colony, primarily to the north and east. At-distance foraging sites were in deeper water and closer to seamounts than were near-colony foraging sites used for chick provisioning, a combination of features indicating enhanced prey availability at these at-distance locations. These findings imply that long-term reproductive success at this and likely other GBR colonies is strongly dependent on the continued stability of these at-distance locations,yet at present all are outside the current Great Barrier Reef Marine Park management zone. To adequately conserve GBR seabirds and other marine species using these resources, a conservation strategy integrated with current management practices is needed for the open waters of the Coral Sea.

Item ID: 39159
Item Type: Article (Research - C1)
ISSN: 2074-1235
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Funders: Australian Research Council (ARC), Marine and Tropical Sciences Research Facility (MTSRF), National Environmental Research Program (NERP), Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority (GBRMPA), Birdlife Australia Stuart Leslie Bird Research Award
Projects and Grants: ARC LP0562157
Date Deposited: 16 Jun 2015 22:53
FoR Codes: 06 BIOLOGICAL SCIENCES > 0602 Ecology > 060201 Behavioural Ecology @ 60%
06 BIOLOGICAL SCIENCES > 0602 Ecology > 060205 Marine and Estuarine Ecology (incl Marine Ichthyology) @ 20%
05 ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCES > 0501 Ecological Applications > 050101 Ecological Impacts of Climate Change @ 20%
SEO Codes: 96 ENVIRONMENT > 9608 Flora, Fauna and Biodiversity > 960808 Marine Flora, Fauna and Biodiversity @ 100%
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