© Finlay Cox/DOC

SAVE THE ANTIPODEAN ALBATROSS

 

One of Aotearoa’s largest seabirds, the Antipodean albatross (Toroa), is in trouble.

These majestic birds only breed on New Zealand’s sub-Antarctic Antipodean Islands and they travel vast oceans to forage and feed. These waters, over which they fly, are no longer safe for them.

In a little more than a decade, we have lost two-thirds of the Antipodean albatross population.

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© Finlay Cox/DOC

A LOVE STORY

 

The story of Antipodean albatross is really a love story.

After an elaborate courtship, involving singing and dancing, these birds pair for life.

Antipodean albatross travel the vast seas before returning to shore to be reunited with their mate and lay a single egg. Together, they work in shifts to care for their chick. It takes hard work, dedication and an entire year to fledge their chick. These doting parents must travel days, sometimes weeks, to find food for their young.

© Kath Walker/DOC
© Kath Walker/DOC

However, they can run into trouble when their search for food brings them into contact with fishing vessels - drowning on long lines set to catch Tuna and Swordfish. Their chick may die, as it takes two dedicated parents to feed it, and the mate remains waiting for their return.

Year after year, the remaining mate returns to the Antipodean Islands hoping to see the return of their long-lost love. It’s a long, lonely wait.

© Kath Walker/DOC

A POPULATION IN FREE-FALL

 

Some 800 breeding birds die each year. While there may be multiple reasons behind this severe decline, like climate change affecting their prey and foraging success, unsafe fishing methods- such as long lines- are having the greatest negative impact on the Antipodean albatross.

If nothing changes, these magnificent seabirds will become extinct.

We can only help Antipodean albatross with your help. Your support will help WWF to stop unsafe fishing practices, work collaboratively with global governments, and employ the latest technology and innovations to prevent their demise.

We cannot do this alone. We need your help.

Together, it’s possible to save the Antipodean albatross.

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© Kath Walker/DOC

Guardians of the Sea

 

These incredible birds travel astonishing distances. Through GPS technology we know the Antipodean albatross can travel 170,000 kilometers on a single trip.

Seafarers, including Māori, have long used these birds as guides at sea to find home. They are the great navigators who seem to easily harness the harshest of winds, and brave the fiercest seas, to glide their way home.

© Kath Walker/DOC
© Finlay Cox/DOC

Now, it’s time to be their guardians.

 

For thousands of years, these mighty seabirds have called Aotearoa home. If we fail to act now, they may be extinct in 20 years. Gone forever in one generation.

We are responsible for their decline, so we must be responsible for their salvation.

Now is the time to become kaitiaki of these guardians of the sea.


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