3 results for Beer, Kate, Thesis

  • A pragmatic utopia: should the Ross Sea be designated a Marine Protected Area?

    Beer, Kate; Brears, Robert; Briars, Lacey; Roldan, Gabriela (2011)

    Postgraduate Certificate thesis
    University of Canterbury Library

    The Ross Sea is a prominent embayment in the Antarctic continent, of around 650,000km2 – an area equal to two percent of the Southern Ocean. Approximately two-thirds of this area is covered by the Ross Ice Shelf. The region is widely recognised as being the last ecosystem on Earth that is little affected by human interference. The Ross Sea is home to a plethora of unusual, unique and globally rare species; the area has high levels of biological diversity, productivity and endemism, all of which suggest the area is worth protecting. Historically, there has been some exploitation of the seal and whale populations of the Ross Sea. More recently, the area has been subject to tourism, scientific whaling, and commercial fishing for the Antarctic toothfish. Of particular concern is the growing presence of fishing vessels taking part in illegal, unregulated and unreported (IUU) fishing activities. The Antarctic toothfish has life-history traits that make the species vulnerable to exploitation, and little is understood about its breeding biology. IUU fishing is worrisome because it represents an unknown level of extraction for a species that appears to hold a crucial position in the Ross Sea food web. Marine Protected Areas (MPAs) have been gaining popularity worldwide as a management tool for protecting areas of special biological importance. Currently it is difficult to create and manage MPAs in areas beyond national jurisdiction – that is, the high seas – but for some areas, regional fisheries management organisations exists. The Southern Ocean is one such place, where the management falls under the auspices of CCAMLR, the Convention on the Conservation of Antarctic Marine Living Resources, and the associated Commission. CCAMLR successfully created the first ever high seas MPA in the Southern Ocean near the South Orkney Islands in 2010. We believe this sets an important precedent for what could be achieved in the Ross Sea. This paper presents three possible plans for creating an MPA in the Ross Sea. Plan A would see the entire Ross Sea become a no-take area indefinitely. Plan B would create a network of MPA sub-areas within the Ross Sea. Plan C would create a management intervention in the form of a moratorium on all extractive resource use (fishing, whaling, bioprospecting) in the Ross Sea for 30 years. The role of CCAMLR and the relative merits of the three options are discussed. Finally, some options are presented for how an MPA in the Ross Sea could be enforced. The Royal New Zealand Navy has boats suitable for enforcement work in the Southern Ocean; the Air Force already conducts surveillance activities, and the future acquisition of an unmanned drone is another possibility. However the most successful outcomes would be achieved via cooperative enforcement taken by a number of nations with interests in the Southern Ocean. To conclude, the authors suggest protection of the Ross Sea is both feasible and warranted. The time to act is now

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  • A review of threats to albatross conservation management and the creation of the Agreement on the Conservation of Albatrosses and Petrels (ACAP)

    Beer, Kate (2011)

    Postgraduate Certificate thesis
    University of Canterbury Library

    Wildlife managers have a difficult task in linking science to effective conservation and management outcomes. Albatross conservation provides an example where these difficulties have been ameliorated through the effective use of a legally binding multilateral agreement, the Agreement on the Conservation of Albatrosses and Petrels. This review covers some of the threats faced by albatrosses, including historical and traditional harvest, introduced mammals, fisheries-related mortality and disease. The creation of ACAP is covered in some detail, with a brief overview of how the Agreement works, and the role of an NGO, Birdlife International, in the conservation of albatrosses. The review concludes with some discussion of future challenges for ACAP.

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  • Conserving the forgotten latitudes: approaches to wildlife management on Southern Ocean islands

    Beer, Kate (2011)

    Postgraduate Certificate thesis
    University of Canterbury Library

    The Southern Ocean or sub-Antarctic islands are broadly defined as the island archipelagos falling between 30o and 60o south. These islands are greatly influenced by their proximity to the Antarctic continent, but form a unique bioregion. The islands are characterised by low species diversity, but with high levels of endemism. They are also key breeding locations for Southern Hemisphere seabirds. Historically the sub-Antarctic islands have been isolated from human populations so were late to be discovered and rarely visited since then. However the islands were not immune to outside influence as first sealing industries exhausted the fur and elephant seal populations, and second the early settlers introduced non-native species that preyed upon island fauna and/or destroyed vegetation and habitats. In the present day, a number of these non-native species continue to wreck havoc on the islands, and they are widely recognised as the single largest threat to the biological integrity of the Southern Ocean islands. Other notable threats are human visitation, wildlife disease, and climate change. Of course, all these factors are inextricably linked, and impossible to consider in isolation. The potential for pest and disease incursion increases in a warming world, and increased tourism pressures in the Antarctic region mean there is also an increased interest in visiting the sub-Antarctic islands. Intensity of management efforts in the past thirty years has varied across the island groups, with different governing bodies taking different approaches to making and initiating management decisions. The global significance of many of the islands has been recognised through designation as World Heritage sites. Statutory management plans have increasingly been seen as crucial to guiding island management outcomes, and now nearly every island group has a guiding document of some sort. The most tangible management efforts have focussed on ecosystem restoration through the eradication of non-native species, mostly mammals. New Zealand has been a world leader in this area, particularly regarding the removal of rodents from relatively large islands using aerial poison drops. In the past five years there have been calls to reconcile management of Southern Ocean islands at an international level. Currently all the islands are managed independently by the respective territorial governing body. For the long term success of conservation management it is integral that island managers are encouraged to work together and openly communicate about management successes (and failures). Recent collaborations where New Zealand staff have assisted on eradication projects elsewhere provide hope for this, and since 2006 there have been two International Forums on the sub-Antarctic held in Hobart, Tasmania, with a third to be held this year. The Southern Ocean region is gaining recognition both in its own right and as an important place to study and manage as an indicator of climate change and global systems health. While examples are drawn from a number of island groups, the case studies focus on the Australian islands of Macquarie and Heard/ McDonald; the United Kingdom administered South Georgia, and the five New Zealand island groups: Antipodes, Auckland, Bounty, Campbell, and Snares.

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