Arctic Biodiversity Trends 2010: Indicator #19, Seabird Harvest

Arctic Biodiversity Trends 2010: Indicator #19, Seabird Harvest

The use of living resources is fundamental to many regions of the Arctic, and for coastal people, marine mammals and seabirds are among the principal sources of harvest. The human use of seabirds varies between the circumpolar nations, both in scale and in form, but often dates back hundreds of years. Historically, birds were taken for their meat, eggs, skins, and down. With the exception of skins, they are still harvested for these body parts but harvest methods have changed over time to include more efficient tools, making the seabirds more exposed to excessive harvest. By nature, most seabirds are already sensitive to adult mortality since they produce small clutch sizes and have delayed maturity. Further, they are generally challenged by low temperatures and reduced day length at high latitudes and periodically suffer due to extreme weather conditions


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