Defining marine important bird areas: testing the foraging radius approach

Soanes, L.M., Bright, J.A., Angel, L.P., Arnould, J.P.Y., Bolton, M., Berlincourt, M., Lascelles, B., Owen, E., Simon-Bouhet, B. and Green, J.A. 2016, Defining marine important bird areas: testing the foraging radius approach, Biological conservation, vol. 196, pp. 69-79, doi: 10.1016/j.biocon.2016.02.007.

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Title Defining marine important bird areas: testing the foraging radius approach
Author(s) Soanes, L.M.
Bright, J.A.
Angel, L.P.ORCID iD for Angel, L.P.
Arnould, J.P.Y.ORCID iD for Arnould, J.P.Y.
Bolton, M.
Berlincourt, M.
Lascelles, B.
Owen, E.
Simon-Bouhet, B.
Green, J.A.
Journal name Biological conservation
Volume number 196
Start page 69
End page 79
Total pages 11
Publisher Elsevier
Place of publication Amsterdam, The Netherlands
Publication date 2016-04
ISSN 1873-2917
Keyword(s) GPS tracking
home-range area
marine protected area
Summary Recent international initiatives have promoted a number of different approaches to identify marine Important Bird and biodiversity Areas (IBAs), which are important areas for foraging, migrating or over-wintering seabirds. The 'Foraging Radius Approach' is one of these and uses known foraging range and habitat preferences to predict the size and location of foraging areas around breeding colonies. Here we assess the performance of the Foraging Radius Approach using GPS tracking data from six seabird species with a variety of foraging modes. For each species we compared the population home-range areas of our six study species with the home-range areas defined using the Foraging Radius Approach. We also assessed whether basic information on depth preferences from tracking data could improve these home-range area estimates. Foraging Radius Approach home-range areas based on maximum foraging radii encompassed the entire population home-range of five out of six of our study species but overestimated the size of the population home-range area in every case. The mean maximum foraging radius overestimated the population home-range areas by a factor of 4-14 for five of the six species whilst the mean foraging radius overestimated the population home-range area for half of the species and underestimated for the rest. In the absence of other data, the Foraging Radius Approach appears to provide a reasonable basis for preliminary marine IBA identification. We suggest that using the mean value of all previously reported maximum foraging radii, informed by basic depth preferences provides the most appropriate prediction, balancing the needs of seabirds with efficient use of marine space.
Language eng
DOI 10.1016/j.biocon.2016.02.007
Field of Research 060201 Behavioural Ecology
050205 Environmental Management
060205 Marine and Estuarine Ecology (incl Marine Ichthyology)
Socio Economic Objective 970106 Expanding Knowledge in the Biological Sciences
HERDC Research category C1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal
ERA Research output type C Journal article
Copyright notice ©2016, Elsevier
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