8 May 2010

Fewer birds being killed by fishing at sea

7:02 am on 8 May 2010

A seabird autopsy report shows fewer birds are being killed by commercial fishing.

Data iisued by the Department of Conservation for the 2006 - 2007 fishing year showed 324 seabird deaths compared to 369 in the previous season.

The birds were returned from 50 different vessels with Ministry of Fisheries observers aboard and two unobserved trips.

However, the Royal Forest and Bird Protection Society of New Zealand is sceptical of the findings. It says while fewer birds appear to have been killed, that's not necessarily true.