decline of populations of marine megafauna species

Growing Demand

The growing demand for fish around the world is driving an expansion of commercial and artisanal fishing operations. Incidental or unintentional captures of non-target marine megafauna in fishing gear in some fisheries add to the cumulative impacts of exploitation, habitat destruction, climate change, pollution and invasive alien species. Bycatch is the main marine threat that is causing the decline of populations of marine megafauna species.

Providing around one-fifth of global marine catches, the maritime areas under the jurisdiction of Member States of the Sub-Regional Fisheries Commission (CSRP) – Cape Verde, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Mauritania, Senegal, Sierra Leone and Gambia – are subject to intense and increasing fishing pressure



The Bycatch Project

The West African Bycatch Partnership is the first initiative in the CSRP region that aims to minimize the bycatch of seabirds and sea turtles in industrial fishing fleets by improving scientific knowledge about the impact of fisheries on species, building the capacity of fisheries observers, providing recommendations on bycatch mitigation techniques, raising awareness of the issue and informing policy decisions. Funded by the MAVA Foundation, the West African bycatch project is coordinated by BirdLife International and implemented by fisheries agencies in CSRP countries, IRD, CMS, University of Barcelona, PRCM and NOAA.