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Comparing methods for monitoring nest debris using silver gulls as a case study


Henderson, GE and Grant, ML and Lavers, JL, Comparing methods for monitoring nest debris using silver gulls as a case study, Marine Pollution Bulletin, 177 Article 113482. ISSN 0025-326X (2022) [Refereed Article]

Copyright Statement

Copyright 2022 Elsevier Ltd.

DOI: doi:10.1016/j.marpolbul.2022.113482


Global plastics production is increasing exponentially and contributing to significant pollution of the marine environment. Of particular concern is ingestion and entanglement risks for marine wildlife, including when items such as rope are incorporated into nest structures. These events are commonly documented using photographic and visual surveys, and each presents a number of challenges and benefits for species conservation and monitoring. Here we compare an invasive (i.e., removing debris from nests) and non-invasive (i.e., photographs) sampling method for quantifying nest debris using the silver gull (Chroicocephalus novahollandiae) as a case study. Overall, 17 debris items were detected in 9% of gull nests. While the use of photographs to monitor nest debris is increasingly popular, the invasive method detected one additional debris item not identified using photography. We therefore recommend caution for nest debris and other monitoring programs where identifying small or cryptic items may require a high level of skill.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:plastic pollution, nest debris, seabird monitoring, debris detection, method development
Research Division:Biological Sciences
Research Group:Ecology
Research Field:Marine and estuarine ecology (incl. marine ichthyology)
Objective Division:Environmental Management
Objective Group:Marine systems and management
Objective Field:Marine biodiversity
UTAS Author:Henderson, GE (Miss Gabrielle Henderson)
UTAS Author:Grant, ML (Miss Megan Grant)
UTAS Author:Lavers, JL (Dr Jennifer Lavers)
ID Code:149076
Year Published:2022
Web of Science® Times Cited:1
Deposited By:Ecology and Biodiversity
Deposited On:2022-03-07
Last Modified:2022-10-17

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