How it works

  • Member groups would officially contact the WSU by letter for support.
  • Under direction from the member group, the WSU conservation committee is formed and a document prepared.
  • The document is then circulated to the WSU board members indicating intention to support the requested action unless notified of an objection.
  • The subsequent letter of support is signed by the Vice-Chair of the WSU then provided to State or Federal Governments within the member’s country as an added outside voice of concern regarding specific seabird conservation issues.
  • The sub-committee also deal with any subsequent correspondence from the member country addressed to the WSU that requires a response using the same process as the initial letter.
  • The sub-committee is disbanded following cessation of correspondence.

WSU Conservation committee: support for regional seabird conservation issues.

Since 2015 the World Seabird Union (WSU) has put in place provisions for an ad hoc Conservation Sub-committee to enable support of the member organisations in their efforts to protect seabirds and their habitat.

The committee is convened when a member group raised an issue of concern in their own country that seeks support of the WSU. The sub-Committee is then created from concerned group members and WSU board members (Vice-Chair plus one other) as required. With the WSU representing 19 groups within the global community, adding a voice of concern to a specific issue within a member’s country to garner support for a specific conservation outcome could be a powerful tool.


Muttonbird Harvest, Big dog bass strait - Nicholas Carlile

Muttonbird Harvest, Big dog bass strait - Nicholas Carlile

Those seeking to have seabird conservation issues raised and supported through the WSU Conservation Committee should first contact their regional seabird group.


Given that representatives from all regional seabird groups are included in the WSU, and many of these have conservation officers or sub committees, the role of the WSU in conservation issues would be a supportive one, rather than a leading role.

When issues arise in specific areas that warrant responses to protect or enhance seabird outcomes the regional group would provide the first response on such issues. If the issue is considered significant to warrant a stronger level of support, where international implications are expected from the lack of conservation of a species or its habitat, then the WSU may be approached to provide further ‘moral’ support to the issue.