Overfishing may drive endangered seabird to rely upon lower quality food

December 19, 2005

by Sarah Yang

The effects of overfishing may have driven marbled murrelets, an endangered seabird found along the Pacific coast, to increasingly rely upon less nutritious food sources, according to a new study by biologists at the University of California, Berkeley.

The results, to be published online by early March 2006 in the journal Conservation Biology, suggest that feeding further down the food web may have played a role in low levels of reproduction observed in contemporary murrelet populations, and has likely contributed to the seabirds' listing as an endangered species, the researchers said.

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