Cat Predation

Cats and Birds: A Deadly Combination

In Wisconsin alone, rural cats are estimated to kill between 8 million and 219 million birds annually (Coleman and Temple 1996).

If you are a cat owner or a bird lover (or both), this may be a subject about which you would like to be better informed. The following Internet sites are good direct or indirect sources of information about the impacts of feral cats on wild bird populations, and what responsible cat owners can do to help reduce this source of mortality.

 Cats and Wildlife Issues - Bibliography and extensive list of on-line sources from the California Department of Fish and Game

 Cats Indoors! - An initiative of the American Bird Conservancy

FAO Consultaion on Reduction of Incidental Catch of Seabirds in Longline Fisheries

Seabirds are being taken incidentally in various commercial longline fisheries in the world, and concerns are arising about the impacts of that incidental take. Seabird bycatch also has an adverse impact on fishing productivity and profitability. Governments, nongovernmental organizations, and commercial fishery associations are petitioning for regulatory measures to reduce the mortality of seabirds in longline fisheries in which seabirds are incidentally taken.

Longline fisheries in which seabird bycatch occurs are: tuna, broadbill (swordfish) and billfish in the South Pacific; toothfish in the Southern Ocean, and halibut, black cod, tuna, billfish, Pacific cod, Greenland halibut, cod, haddock, tusk and ling in the Northern Oceans (Pacific and Atlantic). The species of seabirds most frequently taken are albatrosses and petrels in the South Pacific and South Atlantic fisheries, Northern fulmar in the North Atlantic and albatrosses, gulls and fulmars in the North Pacific fisheries.

Responding to the need to reduce the incidental mortality of seabirds in commercial fishing in the commercial fishing in the Southern Oceans, the Commission for the Conservation of Antarctic Marine Living Resources (CCAMLR) adopted mitigation measures in 1992 to reduce seabird bycatch by its 23 member countries. Under the auspices of the Commission for the Conservation of Southern Bluefin Tuna (CCSBT), Australia, Japan and New Zealand have studied and taken seabird mitigation measures in their southern bluefin tuna longline fishery since 1992, and in 1995 CCSBT adopted the recommendation relating to ecologically related species especially the incidental mortality of seabird by longline fishing which stipulate the policy on data and information collection, mitigation measures and education and information dissemination. The U.S. also adopted, by regulation, seabird bycatch reduction measures for its groundfish longline fisheries in the Bering Sea/Aleutian Islands and Gulf of Alaska in 1997, and is considering adopting regulations for its halibut fishery. The US is currently considering seabird bycatch mitigation measures in the Hawaiian pelagic longline fisheries.

One of the objectives of the Food and Agriculture Organization’s (FAO) Code of Conduct for Responsible Fisheries, adopted in 1995, is to promote the protection of aquatic resources. The Code also contains an article (7.6.9) promoting management measures to minimize the catch of nontarget, non-fish species.

Pursuant to the proposal at the 22nd Session of COFI in March 1997 that FAO organize, in collaboration with Japan and the United States, using extrabudgetary funds, an expert consultation on the issue, representatives of FAO, the Governments of Japan and the United States have agreed to organize and FAO Consultation on the subject in October/November 1998. The objective of the FAO Consultation is to produce a Plan of Action for implementing mitigation guidelines to reduce incidental catches of seabirds in longline fisheries to be considered for adoption by the 23rd Session of COFI in 1999.

In preparation of the FAO Consultation a group of experts from FAO, Japan, the United States and other major regions which have problems with incidental catch of seabirds will be established. This group will be known as the Seabird Technical Working Group (STWG). FAO will appoint the members of the STWG. The members of the STWG will be involved in preparation or review of three background papers on (1) a description of pelagic and demersal longline fisheries (areas, catches, technology and fishing effort) ; (2) review of the incidental catch of seabird in specific longline fisheries; and (3) a review of seabird bycatch mitigation measures and their effect on other marine species and two draft documents on (1) Guidelines for measures to reduce seabird bycatch; and (2) a Plan of Action for implementation of the proposed guidelines prior to meeting in Japan in March 1998.

FAO will distribute the STWG outputs to FAO member countries for comment. Comments by member countries on the draft Guidelines and Plan of Action may be submitted to FAO by 1 June 1998. FAO will be responsible for completing the final Guidelines and Plan of Action.


Kiyoshi Katsuyama 
Deputy Director 
International Affair Division 
Fisheries Agency, Govt. of Japan 
1-2-1 Kasumigaseki 
Chiyoda-Ku Tokyo, Japan 100 
Tel. +81-3-3591-1086; fax +81-3-3504-2649 
Yuji Uozumi 
Fishery Biologist 
Tuna Ecology Section 
Nat. Res. Inst. of Far Seas Fisheries 
5-7-1, Orido, Shimizu 424, Japan 
Chiyoda-Ku Tokyo, Japan 100 
Tel. 543-36-6046; fax 543-35-9642 

Kim Rivera 
Fisheries Management Specialist 
Sustainable Fisheries Division 
National Marine Fisheries Service 
P.O. Box 21668 
Juneau, Alaska 99802 
Tel. 907-586-7228; fax 907-586-7465
Kenton D. Wohl 
Regional Nongame Migratory Bird Coordinator 
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service 
1011 E. Tudor Road 
Anchorage, Alaska 99503 

John Willy Valdemarsen 
Chief, Fishing Technology Service 
Fishery Industries Division 
Viale delle Terme di Caracalla - 00100 Rome 
Tel. (39-6) 57056449; fax (39-6) 57055188 
Joel Prado 
Fishery Industry Officer, FIIT 
Fishery Industries Division 
Viale delle Terme di Caracalla - 00100 Rome 
Tel. (39-6) 57054931; fax (39-6) 57055188 

Last Updated: September 22, 2015