LONG-TERM POPULATION MONITORING PROGRAM (French Polar Institute prog 109 et 394)
Atlas of top predators from the French Southern Territories in the Southern Indian Ocean
This Atlas is a summary of information on the use of the southern Indian Ocean by 22 seabirds and seals species (king penguin, gentoo penguin, Adélie penguin, eastern rockhopper penguin, northern rockhopper penguin, macaroni penguin, Amsterdam albatross, wandering albatross, black-browed albatross, Indian yellow-nosed albatross, light-mantled albatross, sooty albatross, southern giant petrel, northern giant petrel, southern fulmar, Cape petrel, snow petrel, white-chinned petrel, grey petrel, brown skua, southern elephant seal and Antarctic fur seal). The distribution map of each species was obtained by the use of tracking methods that allow identifying important areas in the southern Indian Ocean. The determination of zones of high species richness suggests several important areas for top predators. First the breeding colonies and surrounding zones: Amsterdam and Saint Paul Islands, Marion and Prince Edward islands and the Del Cano Rise, Crozet Islands, Kerguelen Plateau and East Antarctica (Adélie Land sector). Second, the upwelling-current zones: Benguela and Agulhas Currents Systems and third several the oceanic zones: the Southwest Indian Ridge (East Bouvetøya and the North Subtropical Front), the Mid-Indian Ridge (North of Kerguelen and the Eastern Indian Ocean, the Southeast Indian Ridge (Great Australian Bight and Tasmania, Ob and Lena Banks, and East Antarctica (Prydz Bay – Queen Maud Land sectors, Adélie Land sector). The analysis of distribution indicates that some pelagic species have a much wider foraging range outside the breeding season than during the breeding season (some disperse over very large areas, i.e. wandering albatross). This highlights the urgent need to strengthen collaborations, namely between conservation and management organisms such as CCAMLR and the fisheries organisations (RFMOs), to ensure the protection of these species and the conservation of the ecosystem that will also be beneficial for many other species. In conclusion, although this inventory of areas of key importance is preliminary because of the lack of data on several keystone species such as burrowing petrels which could not be studied in this work, the results presented here show an unprecedented improvement in the identification of priority areas within the Southern Indian Ocean, which should be the primary targets of site-based conservation efforts in the near future.
This data are available to download:
The recommended format for citing this dataset in a research publication is in the following format: Delord K., Barbraud C., Bost C.A., Cherel Y., Guinet C. & Weimerskirch H. 2013. Atlas of top predators from French Southern Territories in the Southern Indian Ocean. CEBC-CNRS. Pp 252. DOI: 10.15474/AtlasTopPredatorsOI_CEBC.CNRS_FrenchSouthernTerritories
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The Marine Mammal Protected Area Task Force
The Marine Mammal Protected Area Task Force (MMPATF) was created in 2013 by the International Committee on Marine Mammal Protected Areas (ICMMPA), the International Union for the Conservation of Nature’s (IUCN) World Commission on Protected Areas (WCPA) Marine Vice Chair, and the Chair of IUCN’s Species Survival Commission (SSC) to help support a stronger global profile and to provide a stronger voice for the MMPA constituency within IUCN.