NEWS | Benguela Seabirds Conservation Plan

Daisho Sushi and Wine Bar
January 5, 2015
NEWS| Namibia’s Anti-Poaching Campaign
January 7, 2015

Compiled Sanet van Zijl

The many species of seabirds that thrive along the Namibian coast, surviving off of the rich, life-giving Benguela Current, are facing a host of threats.

The Benguela Current flows north along the west coast of South Africa and Namibia. The southern part of the current meets the warmer Aghulhas Current flowing east from the Indian Ocean and the northern part interacts with the warmer Angolan current flowing south. The mixing of warm and cold currents causes highly productive upwellings – which are ideal thriving conditions for populations of marine mammals, seabirds and fish. Important migratory bird populations also find shelter here in coastal lagoons and bays.

The African Eurasian Migratory Water birds Agreement recently presented a three-day workshop in Swakopmund; where the decision was made to institute an inter-government conservation plan in order to protect the Benguela seabirds. Among those gathered for the workshop were officials from the ministries of fisheries, environment and tourism, the South East Atlantic Fisheries Organization (SEAFO) and the Benguela Current Commission. The nine bird species that comprise the Benguela seabirds, of which six are endemic to Namibia, were discussed. These nine species are: Cape Cormorants, Bank Cormorants, Crowned Cormorants, African Penguin, Cape Gannet, Damara Tern, Swift Tern, Caspian Tern and the African Black Oystercatcher.



Cape Cormorant, Phalacrocorax capensis


Bank Cormorant, Phalacrocorax neglectus


Crowned Cormorant, Microcarbo coronatus


African Penguin, Spheniscus demersus

Cape Gannets pair bonding

Cape Gannets, Morus capensis


Damara Tern, Sternula balaenarum

Fingal Beach, Tweed Valley, NSW

Swift Tern, Thalasseus bergii


Caspian Tern, Hydroprogne caspia


African Black Oystercatcher, Haematopus moquini

These bird species are very important as their excrements contribute to Guano production. Guano is extremely valuable and makes an outstanding agricultural fertilizer. At the time being, the Guano is being harvested faster than it is being deposited and extraction destroys habitat. Along with this destruction, disturbance by tourists and low fish stock in the sea have also led to dwindling numbers of these beautiful birds.

Those attending the workshop came up with an action plan that will be drafted by Bird Life South Africa and will be presented at the next meeting of parties of the BCC for adoption. Said meeting will be held December of this year in Bonn, Germany.

Travel News Namibia
Travel News Namibia
Travel News Namibia is a high-quality glossy Namibia travel and lifestyle magazine tasked with promoting Namibia to the world. With riveting stories, first-hand encounters and magnificent photographs showcasing tourism, travel, nature, adventure and conservation, TNN is the ultimate and most comprehensive guide to exploring Namibia. Travel News Namibia is published in five different editions per year. These include four English- language editions and one German. Travel News Namibia is for sale in Namibia and South Africa.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

    Magazine Subscription

    Please fill out the form below and we will get in touch with you


    Full Name


    Delivery address

    Namibia - N$ 210

    International - €50

    EFT Direct Deposits can be made to the following account:

    Account Name: Venture Publications (Pty) Ltd

    Bank : Bank Windhoek

    Branch code: 48-19-72-00, Windhoek

    Swift code: BWLINANX

    Acknowledgement of payment will only be made upon receipt of a deposit slip.

    Deposit slips can be e-mailed together with subscription form to

      Contact Us

      Please fill out the form below and we will get in touch with you

      Your Name (required)

      Your Email (required)


      Your Message