Seabirds - sentinels of our seas

Seabirds have become the subject of focus and interest as never before for various reasons. The large declines in the seabird populations in North Norway came as a surprise to many. Seabirds are also regarded as good indicators of the environment that they belong to – the sea and the coast. Perhaps these “sentinels of the sea” are warning that the condition of the marine ecosystems is in disorder?


The number of seabird species on the new list of threatened species in Norway, including Svalbard, has increased by five since 2006. At both Nordic and international levels, the problems are under discussion and plans for action are being drawn up. Norway is in the forefront and has made comprehensive management plans for our marine areas – where focus is also on the welfare of the seabirds. 

Researcher Hallvard Strøm at the Norwegian Polarinstiutt has for years studied the seabirds, and is one of the authors in this edition of the popular science series Way North.

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