Albatrosses and Petrels


These are the largest seabirds of Patagonia, with a wingspan of more than two meters, and feeding in the open ocean of the wide Argentine continental shelf. The largest breeding colony of the near threatened black-browed albatrosses is found on Steeple Jason of the Malvinas/Falkland islands, where over 180,000 breeding pairs gather each year. The southern giant petrel breeds at only four locations in Patagonia, and while females mostly forage offshore on fish and squids, males mainly take advantage of marine bird and mammal carrion found along the shore. While both species have varied feeding strategies, they overlap with fisheries throughout their distribution range.

Challenges

Both species are mainly impacted by mortality in fishing gear and plastic pollution while feeding in the open ocean, and by disturbance of their breeding colonies while on land.

Our work

We work with government agencies assisting in the implementation of fishing practices that minimize negative interaction with both bird species, developing recommendations to reduce nesting ground disturbances, and developing protected areas. In parallel, our scientists monitor the species directly to assess breeding success, and collect complementary information from their habitats that might provide early signs of threats to the species and adequate responses.