Marine Conservation

Protecting birds by protecting their food sources and leading a community of researchers

For seabirds and other marine species, healthy fish stocks and protected breeding areas are key components necessary for thriving populations. Audubon Washington works across two strategic areas to ensure the needs of marine birds are being met.

Protecting Forage Fish

Together with our Audubon counterparts and coalition partnersthroughout the U.S., Audubon Washington works to promote fisheries management and policies that:

1. Recognize the value of forage fish in the marine ecosystem;

2. Enact ecosystem-based management reform;

3. Implement safety measures to avoid seabird bycatch;

4. Take a precautionary approach to setting harvest limits, approving new fisheries, and protecting key spawning areas.

Connecting a Community of Researchers

Audubon Washington serves as coordinator for the Puget Sound Ecosystem Monitoring Program (PSEMP) Marine Birds Work Group. This group serves as a forum for research, monitoring, and conservation practitioners who share an interest in marine and coastal bird conservationin the Salish Sea. Our work group members include individuals from the U.S. and Canada and represent academic, tribal, NGO, state and federal agency, and private entities.

The mission of the Marine Birds Work Group is to convene individuals from across organizations and sectors to facilitate and enhance integrated and complementary data collection for bird populations and their habitats within the Salish Sea that result in scientifically robust:

1. Status assessments;

2. Evaluation of management and restoration actions;

3. Evaluation of ecological processes affecting bird populationsand their habitats;

4. Communication with decision-makers and members of the public.

In the News

Why the Littlest Fish Matter a Whole Lot
How to Reverse the Decline of Marine Birds
Action Taken To Protect Fish At Bottom Of Ocean Food Chain

Our Partners

Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife 

Puget Sound Partnership
SeaDoc Society
Sound Action
Pacific Birds Habitat Joint Venture


Puget Sound Institute - Salish Sea Currents
Marine IBA e-atlas
Pacific Flyway Marine IBAs Map
Marine Bird Density Map
Forage Fish Spawning Location Map
Fact sheet: Pacific herring, surf smelt, Pacific sand lance, northern anchovy
Puget Sound Nearshore Ecosystem Restoration Project
Little Fish, Big Impact: A summary report with new data on forage fish and management recommendations.

How you can help, right now