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World Seabird Conference: "Seabirds as Prey" symposium participants requested

Donald Lyons, September 6, 2014

Dear all,

We are looking for potential contributors for a session titled “Seabirds as Prey: Top-down control of seabird colony, population, and foraging dynamics” for the 2nd World Seabird Conference in Cape Town, South Africa, October 2015. Please see symposium description below and, if interested in participating, send the co-conveners a title of your proposed presentation within the next few weeks (by 28 September).

Co-Conveners: Robert Suryan, Oregon State University,, Mark Hipfner, Simon Fraser University and Environment Canada,, Donald Lyons, Oregon State University,

In most marine and coastal food webs, seabirds are not apex predators. The potential impact of top-down regulation in seabird ecology and population dynamics, however, remains understudied. Furthermore, the recovery of native predator populations following decades of suppression is exerting previously unobserved pressures on seabird populations. Important questions regarding to what extent some seabird populations may be shifting from bottom-up to top-down control and whether ecological principals of trophic cascades or meso-predator release apply to food webs involving seabirds. This symposium will focus on the interactions of seabirds and seabird predators (primarily, but not exclusively, native predators) and the degree to which top-down control is impacting seabird colony, population, and foraging dynamics. We hope that contributions will include a broad range of seabird predators at sea (teleost fishes to sharks and marine mammals) and on land (skuas and eagles to pinnipeds and polar bears). Micro- to macro-scale perspectives could range from top-down effects on foraging behavior at sea to impacts on reproduction and redistribution of breeding colonies.

If you have questions or suggestions please let us know.


Rob, Mark, and Don