Management plans and visitor site guidelines for Antarctic colonies of Southern Giant Petrels

The Southern Giant Petrel Macronectes giganteus is one of only two ACAP-listed species that breeds on the Antarctic Continent.  The other spcies is the Light-mantled Sooty Albatross Phoebastria palpebrata.

Fifteen Southern Giant Petrel breeding localities on the Continent and associated islands are protected as ASPAs (Antarctic Specially Protected Areas) and two as ASMAs (Antarctic Specially Managed Areas) in terms of the Antarctic Treaty (http://www.ats.aq/index_e.htm). The Antarctic Treaty Consultative Meeting (ATCM), acting on the advice of its Committee for Environmental Protection (CEP; http://www.ats.aq/e/cep.htm), adopts new and updates existing management plans for ASPAs and ASMAs on an annual basis.

See http://www.ats.aq/documents/cep/Register%20updated%202008_e.pdf for a listing of ASPAs and ASMAs and to find PDFs of their management plans.

ASPAs supporting Southern Giant Petrel breeding colonies are:

Rookery Islands, Holme Bay, Mac.Robertson Land (ASPA 102)

Southern Powell Island and adjacent islands, South Orkney Islands (ASPA 111)

Coppermine Peninsula, Robert Island, South Shetland Islands (ASPA 112)

Lichfield Island, Arthur Harbour, Anvers Island, Palmer Archipelago (ASPA 113)

Avian Island, off Adelaide Island, Antarctic Peninsula (ASPA 117)

Pointe-Geologie Archipelago, Terre Adélie (ASPA 120)

Byers Peninsula, Livingston Island, South Shetland Islands (ASPA 126)

Western shore of Admiralty Bay, King George Island (ASPA 128)

Potter Peninsula, King George Island, South Shetland Islands (ASPA 132)

Harmony Point, Nelson Island, South Shetland Islands (ASA 133)

Cierva Point and offshore islands, Danco Coast, Antarctic Peninsula (ASPA 134)

Ardley Island, Maxwell Bay, South Shetland Islands (ASPA 150)

Lions Rump, King George Island, South Shetland Islands (ASPA 151)

Frazier Islands, Windmill Islands, Wilkes Land (ASPA 160)

Hawker Island, Vestfold Hills, Ingrid Christensen Coast Princess Elizabeth Land, East Antarctica (ASPA 167)

Southern Giant Petrels also breed within Admiralty Bay (ASMA 1; see its management plan at http://www.ats.aq/documents/recatt/Att338_e.pdf) and at Southwest Anvers Island and Palmer Basin (ASMA 7; http://www.ats.aq/documents/recatt/Att385_e.pdf). 

A further five Antarctic localities visited by tourists and which support Southern Giant Petrel colonies have Visitor Site Guides published by the Antarctic Treaty Secretariat (go to http://www.ats.aq/e/ats_other_siteguidelines.htm to find PDFs of the site guides for the localities listed below).

The five visitor sites, all situated in the Antarctic Peninsula region, are:

Barrientos Island (Aitcho Islands), South Shetland Islands

Brown Bluff, Antarctic Peninsula (suspected breeding only)

Hannah Point, Livingston Island, South Shetland Islands

Penguin Island, King George Island, South Shetland Islands

Turret Point, King George Island, South Shetland Islands

See also for Southern Giant Petrel breeding colonies identified as Important Breeding Areas (IBAs) in the Antarctic Peninsula region:

Harris, C.M., Carr, R., Lorenz, K. & Jones, S. 2011. Important Bird Areas in Antarctica: Antarctic Peninsula, South Shetland Islands, South Orkney Islands - Final Report. Cambridge: Environmental Research & Assessment Ltd. 225 pp.

Last updated 11 January 2013