GONZALEZ ZEVALLOS Diego Ricardo
congresos y reuniones científicas
Spatial conflicts between foraging seabirds and trawl fisheries in the proposed marine protected area of Golfo San Jorge, Argentina
PABLO YORIO; FLAVIO QUINTANA; PATRICIA DELL´ARCIPRETTE; DIEGO GONZÁLEZ ZEVALLOS
Port Elizabeth, Sudáfrica
Congreso; Society for Conservation Biology SCB, 21st Annual Meeting; 2007
The north of Golfo San Jorge holds a significant proportion of the Patagonian breeding population of Magellanic Penguins. These are important targets for ecotourism and guano production, respectively. Its waters are also used by over 100 trawlers targeting for hake and shrimp. This area has been recently proposed as a Marine National Park, and thus information is needed for spatial planning. We studied the use of feeding areas by penguins (n = 5) and cormorants (n = 13) during the 2006 breeding season using GPS, and assessed its relationship with fisheries based on fishery statistics and on-board observations. Foraging distances form the colony varied between 25.8 and 44.3 km (mean = 37.4) for Magellanic Penguins and 2.0 and 17.9 km (mean = 8.9) for Imperial Cormorants. Foraging areas overlapped extensively with trawlers operating in the area. Ten of the cormorants spent on average 53% (range = 26-87%) of their time at sea within the area used by the fishing fleets. Incidental mortality evaluated during the height of the fishing season between 2003 and 2006 reached a maximum of 1382 and 1855 cormorants and penguins, respectively. Our results suggest the urgent need for developing spatial and temporal zoning schemes to minimize conflicts between seabird populations and commercial fisheries.