The International Plan of Action for Reducing Incidental Catch of Seabirds in Longline Fisheries (IPOA-Seabirds) was developed by FAO in response to the growing concern. The IPOA-Seabirds requests countries with longline fisheries that interact with seabirds to develop a national plan (NPOA-Seabirds) to reduce the incidental seabird catch in their fisheries. Several countries in the South American region have large populations of albatrosses and petrels, and existing assessments and data indicate that significant numbers of seabirds are caught annually in several longline fisheries in this region. Thus FAO and BirdLife International organized this joint workshop to discuss albatross and petrel conservation and to initiate the development of NPOA-Seabirds in the regional countries.
Representatives of different disciplines (research institutes, fishing industry, non-governmental organizations, governmental agencies) from Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Peru and Uruguay met to discuss topics related to implementation of NPOA-Seabirds. National reports were presented giving an overview of the problem and the status of the progress in the development of their NPOA-Seabirds. Experts representing the United States of America and New Zealand, which have finalized the development of their NPOA-Seabirds, gave presentations of these works. Presentations were also given of regional agreements such as the South American Strategy for the Conservation of Albatrosses and Petrels (ESCAPE), the Agreement on the Conservation of Albatrosses and Petrels (ACAP) and the Southern Seabird Solution (SSS). Discussion groups were set up to discuss mitigation measures, priorities, projects and potential funding sources.