The Prince Of Wales Renews His Support For Albatross Conservation
A New Zealand conservation organisation is delighted His Royal Highness, The Prince of Wales has agreed to extend his Patronage for another three years. The Southern Seabird Solutions Trust was recently advised of the Prince’s decision by Clarence House.
His Royal Highness watched albatrosses during his time at sea in the British Royal Navy and has said he was awed by their ability to glide effortlessly alongside his ship. He has since become concerned about the precarious state of many albatross populations. His concern stems from the fact that although perfectly adapted to live in one of the most unforgiving environments on the planet, their populations are very fragile. Today they are the world’s most threatened bird grouping, and the key threat they face is mortality from fishing.
“We are honoured The Prince of Wales has agreed to continue as our Patron. As the breeding place or home of 14 of the world’s 22 albatross species New Zealand has a lead role in ensuring these magnificent birds survive into the next decade. One of these species, the Antipodean albatross is in a particularly serious situation. It is declining at an alarming rate and the next few years will be critical” says Bill Mansfield, Chair of Southern Seabird Solutions.
Southern Seabird Solutions works with fishers to foster seabird-safe fishing. The Trust believes that the individuals who are out on the water catching fish are ultimately the ones that can solve this issue. Mr Mansfield said “Our Trust helps fishers understand the critical role they play and ensure they get the support and encouragement they need to fish using seabird safe fishing practices.”
The Parties to the Agreement for the Conservation of Albatrosses and Petrels (ACAP), including New Zealand, are highlighting the ongoing conservation crisis the world’s albatrosses face by marking the 19th June as The World Albatross Day. In so doing they hope to raise public awareness and especially awareness within the fishing industry worldwide.