Pacific Seabird Group  43rd Annual Meeting

Pacific Seabird Group
44th Annual Meeting

Tacoma, Washington
22-25 Feb 2017

"Sound to Sea: Marine Birds Across the Seascape"

Click here for the announcement.
Click here for PSG 2017 Meeting Information.

For information, contact

Photo credit: Phil Green
Photo credit: Phil Green

Interested in hosting an Annual Meeting?
For the Local Committee Application Procedure, click here!

"Sound to Sea: Marine Birds Across the Seascape"

The 2017 Annual Meeting of the Pacific Seabird Group will be held at the Greater Tacoma Convention and Trade Center in downtown Tacoma, WA, 22-25 February 2017. In keeping with the locale for the meeting, the theme is “Sound to Sea: Marine Birds Across the Seascape” and we are planning a robust scientific program, with a variety of technical sessions and symposia.

Tacoma is ideally situated along the shores of southern Puget Sound where you’ll find great places to run, hike, kayak, paddleboard and, of course, birdwatch - Puget Sound is a nationally significant wintering area for a wide diversity of marine birds. Boasting stunning natural surroundings, with Mount Rainier in full view, you can enjoy the mesmerizing outdoors just minutes from the downtown. Tacoma's downtown core has undergone significant urban renewal with growing food, music and artistic scenes. Conference attendees will have easy access to museums, urban parks, fine dining, nightlife, microbreweries, and local coffee and tea shops. Within walking distance of the conference hotel, attendees will find the Washington State History Museum, the Tacoma Art Museum, and the Tacoma Museum of Glass (think Dale Chihuly). A bit further away, you will find the Point Defiance Zoo located in the vast and beautiful Point Defiance Park.

Information about the 2017 Meeting can be found here.

Important Deadlines:
Special Paper Sessions, Symposia and Plenary Speaker Nominations: Friday, August 19th, 2016
Registration and abstract submission opens: Friday, September 30th, 2016
Travel award deadline: Friday, October 28th, 2016
Abstract submission deadline: Friday, November 18th, 2016
Abstract and travel award acceptance notification: Friday, December 9th, 2016
Early registration ends and rates increase by $50: Friday, December 30th, 2016

Questions? Please contact the following people:

Local committee Co-Chairs:
Peter Hodum, Oikonos Ecosystem Knowledge
Scott Pearson, Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife
Nathalie Hamel, Puget Sound Partnership
Email: locochair [at] pacificseabirdgroup [dot] org

Scientific Program Chair:
Kyra Mills-Parker, Oiled Wildlife Care Network
Email: programchair [at] pacificseabirdgroup [dot] org

Awards Chair:
Kathy Kuletz, US Fish and Wildlife
Email: pastchair [at] pacificseabirdgroup [dot] org

Student representative:
Chris Tyson, UC Davis
Email: Student_Rep [at] pacificseabirdgroup [dot] org

2017 Meeting Organisers

  • Nathalie Hamel, Peter Hodum, and Scott Pearson – Local Committee Co-Chairs
  • Kyra Mills-Parker – Scientific Program Chair and PSG Chair Elect
  • Kathy Kuletz – Awards Committee Chair and PSG Past Chair
  • Chris Tyson – PSG Student Representative
  • Martin Renner – PSG Treasurer
  • Nina Karnovsky – PSG Chair
  • Jane Dolliver – PSG Secretary
  • Joanna Smith – PSG Communications Coordinator
  • Anne Francis Web Design – Webmaster

Meeting Program and Schedule:

10 February: registration, committee meetings
11 February: regular paper sessions ~8:30am -5pm; evening poster session reception 6:30pm
12 February: regular paper sessions ~8:30am -5pm; evening student mentoring mixer 6:30pm
13 February: regular paper sessions ~8:30am -5pm; closing banquet 6:30pm

Please see updated Daily Schedule Overview here!
Please see updated Scientific Program here!

PSG Meeting Glasses

PSG Meeting Merchandise – tshirts and silicone pint glasses
Men's and women's tshirts as well as silicone pint glasses, both with the meeting logo, is available. T-shirts are grey with the PSG meeting logo, available in womens small to extra large, and men's small to extra large. T-shirts are $20 USD each.

For the first time, PSG is offering custom silicone pint glasses in torqouise and black with the 43rd annual meeting tropicbird logo on them. The silicone pint glasses can be used for hot or cold liquids. These are non-toxic hot/cold classes that can be used for water or coffee among numerous other things. For more details, PSG Meeting Glassesgo to Our tropicbird and chick logo will be appearing on both black and turquoise glasses and promise to be stunning. Pre-order yours to guarantee you get one! Lids will be available for purchase at the reg desk. Silicone pint glasses are $15 USD.

To order your PSG Meeting Merchandise please visit

Contact for more information on the 2016 Meeting:
Lindsay Young, Local Committee Chair


Thursday 11 Feb, 9am

Lisa T. Ballance, PhD
The Life Aquatic – Reflections on the At-Sea Lives of Seabirds in the Eastern Tropical Pacific Ocean

Lisa T. Ballance, PhDLisa obtained her Ph.D. from the University of California Los Angeles in 1993 and accepted a post-doctoral position the same year with the National Research Council. She joined NOAA's Southwest Fisheries Science Center (SWFSC) as a marine ecologist in 1996, and has remained there throughout her career. Since 2007 she has been the Director of the Marine Mammal and Turtle Research Division and was recently appointed Chair of the NOAA Fisheries Seabird Program. In addition to her doctorate, she holds a Master of Science degree from Moss Landing Marine Laboratories (1987) and a Bachelor of Science degree from the University of California San Diego (1981). Her research is heavily focused on cetacean and seabird ecology in oceanic systems; recent interests include macroecology , and ecosystem-based approaches to management. Lisa is also a Professor at the Scripps Institution of Oceanography, Research Advisor with the National Academies, and Affiliate Professor at the University of San Diego. She has served on the editorial board of Marine Ornithology and is a Past Chair of the Pacific Seabird Group. Download Plenary »

Friday 12 Feb, 8:30am

William J. Sydeman, PhD
New Tricks, Old Dogs, Seabird Resilience, and No-Analog Ecosystems

William J. Sydeman, PhDDr. William (Bill) Sydeman is a veteran seabird and ecosystem ecologist and has been an active participant in the PSG community since 1986. Dr. Sydeman served as the Chair of PSG from 2000-2002, co-Chair for the Advisory Panel for Marine Birds and Mammals for the North Pacific Marine Science Organization from 2003 to 2010, and currently sits on the Scientific Advisory Team for the State of California's Ocean Protection Council. Dr. Sydeman has worked on the concept of seabirds as ecosystem indicators, and is currently conducting a variety of projects on forage nekton (krill and forage fish) and seabirds from the North Pacific to the South Atlantic (Benguela Current) focusing primarily on how climate change affects winds, upwelling, and ecosystems. Dr. Sydeman received his PhD from UC Davis in 1999, and is currently the President and Senior Scientist at Farallon Institute for Advanced Ecosystem Research in Petaluma, California. Download Plenary »


Register Here »

Member: $335.00
Non-Member: $380.00
Student Member: $205.00
Student Non-Member: $230.00
Day Fee: $180.00

If you submit an abstract and opt to pay later, you must pay by the early registration deadline, or your rate will increased by $50. Plan accordingly!

Included in the above rates are attendance to the scientific program, lunches on Feb 11-13, and an evening reception on Feb 11th.

How to change your registration or pay with a different credit card:
If you would like to register, pay on a business card and then add items that you will pay for on a different card (i.e. field trips, banquets, shirts etc) please download the following pictorial guide that will walk you through it. You will need access to the e-mail account you registered with during this process to complete the transaction.

Contact for more information about Registration or RegOnline:
Lindsay Young, Local Committee Chair


Abstract submission is now closed.

We are looking forward to a strong scientific program in Hawaii! As in past years, the PSG Annual Meeting will include invited and contributed papers, including plenary speakers. We have seven Special Paper Sessions! The topics are translocation of seabirds, nesting habitat restoration, tern colony restoration, urban seabirds, foraging and breeding ecology of dovekies, seabirds in NE Asia, and marine spatial planning. One Symposium is planned for rare and threatened Pacific auks. Contributed sessions include topics familiar to PSG members such as breeding biology, conservation biology, and tracking & distribution. Please see complete list below and on RegOnline.

Updated Scientific Program now available!

See you in Hawaii!

Nina Karnovsky, Scientific Program Chair

Special Paper Sessions and Symposia
For descriptions please click here.

SPS 1 - Move them or lure them: Translocation and social attraction in seabird conservation
Session Coordinators:
Lindsay Young and Eric VanderWerf, Pacific Rim Conservation
Contact for more information: Lindsay Young, lindsay(at)

SPS2 - Restoring Nesting Habitat for Seabirds
Session Coordinators:
Jennifer Boyce, NOAA/Montrose Settlements Restoration Program and Scott Hall, National Fish and Wildlife Federation
Contact for more information: Jennifer Boyce, jennifer.boyce(at)

SPS3 - Seabirds in Northeast Asia
Session Coordinators:
Daisuke Ochi, National Research Institute of Far Seas Fisheries, Fisheries Research Agency, Gregg Howald, Island Conservation, and Kuniko Otsuki, Marine Bird Restoration Group
Contact for more information: Daisuke Ochi, otthii(at)

SPS4 - 3rd Marine Spatial Planning Session
Session Coordinators:
David Pereksta, Bureau of Ocean Energy Management and Jo Smith, TNC Canada
Contact for more information: Jo Smith, joanna_smith(at)

SPS5 - Urban Seabirds: Roadblocks and Solutions to Conservation in Urbanized Environments
Session Coordinators:
David Hyrenbach, Hawai’i Pacific University - O’ahu
Contact for more information: David Hyrenbach, khyrenbach(at)

SPS6 - Tern Colony Restoration and the Development of Conservation Networks: Breeding and Non-breeding Periods
Session Coordinators:
Dan Roby, USGS-Oregon Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Unit, Oregon State University; Simba Chan, BirdLife International – Asia Division; Shuihua Chen, Zhejiang Museum of Natural History; Don Lyons, Department of Fisheries and Wildlife, Oregon State University; Yasuko Suzuki, Oregon Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Unit, Oregon State University
Contact for more information: Dan Roby, daniel.roby(at)

SPS7 - Foraging and breeding ecology of a high Arctic auk, the Dovekie Alle alle
Session Coordinators:
Katarzyna Wojczulanis-Jakubas, Dariusz Jakubas, University of Gdańsk, Dept. of Vertebrate Ecology and Zoology
Contact for more information: Katarzyna Wojczulanis-Jakubas, biokwj(at)

Symposium 1 - Symposium on ecology and status of rare and threatened Pacific auks
Session Coordinators:
John Piatt, USGS Alaska Science Center, Gus van Vliet, Auke Bay Observatory, and Harry Carter, Carter Biological Consulting
Contact for more information: John Piatt, jpiatt(at)


Travel Awards are now closed.

Contact for more information:
Joanna Smith, 2016 Awards Committee Chair and PSG Past Chair


The Pacific Seabird Group is excited to announce a unique location for this year’s conference: The Turtle Bay Resort and Golf Club. Nestled in a protected bay along the famous North Shore of Oahu, the resort offers stunning oceanfront access, tranquility and beautiful accommodations that are hard to find amongst the crowds of most hotels in Waikiki. The resort is a 60-minute drive from Honolulu International airport, is beachfront and virtually next door to James Campbell National Wildlife Refuge. From the months of November through May, Laysan Albatross can often be seen flying by the property. Also from the months of November through May is the high surf season, and the North Shore of Oahu is one of the largest destinations for surfers in the world. We recommend booking your accommodations well in advance so that you can find a place to stay within your budget.

Rates and Booking

PSG's room blocks are now full. Attendees can still book directly through the Turtle Bay website.

Alternative Accommodations

While we would love for as many of you as possible to stay at the hotel, we understand that this room rate is significantly higher than most budgets will allow. The good news is that there are numerous less expensive alternatives both on-site and nearby.

Marriott in Laie For those looking for a less expensive hotel, the new Marriott Courtyard Oahu North Shore is approximately 10 minutes by car in the town of Laie. The PSG group rate of $199.00 USD plus taxes per night. Parking is $10 USD per day. Room block is 10 – 14 Feb 2016. Last day to book is January 10, 2016! Click here to book now. Or call Marriott Courtyard at 1-808-293-4900 and ask for the Pacific Seabird Group rate.

Turtle Bay Condos Sharing the Turtle Bay Resort property is a large condo complex that has studios, one, two and three bedroom units that start at $95/night. The management website is:

Vacation Rental By Owner (VRBO) For a vacation rental nearby (including the above condos) both VRBO ( and have lots of options nearby. The closest regions are Turtle Bay, Kahuku, Laie, Kawela and Sunset beach.

Backpacker’s Hostel A 10 minute bus or 15 min bike ride from Turtle Bay, rooms starting at $27/night.

Camping For those preferring a more rustic approach, Malaekahana campground is a 5 minute drive or 15 minute bike ride from the resort:

Room sharing Do you need a roommate to share costs but don’t know any other members? We’ve set up a page for requesting roommates for both students and general attendees. Submit your information here on this form and we will do our best to match you up with other PSG meeting-goers. You and your roommate(s) are responsible for making your own accommodation arrangements with the hotel or at one of the other accommodation options (e.g., VRBO and Turtle Bay condos).

Air Travel

Multiple major air carriers service Honolulu International Airport from the US, Canada and the Pacific Region. From the west coast of North America flights are 5-6 hours in length and are $350-$650.

Ground Transportation and Parking

The Turtle Bay Resort is located 60 minutes by car from Honolulu International Airport and offers free parking for all guests and visitors. Turtle Bay is also on a direct city bus line from Honolulu ( by taking bus 52. The bus is $2.50 and departs every 30 minutes. See  for schedules. Travel time via the bus is approximately 1.5-2 hours. Airport shuttles are also available for $15-$25 per person on multiple carriers and take approximately 1 hour. There is an enterprise rental car facility at the hotel where a car can be rented for day trips.

Food and Banquet

All registered attendees will have box lunches provided during the scientific session days 11-13 February and at the evening reception on 11 February.  Options to select vegetarian meals will be available.  Banquet tickets for Saturday 13 February will be available on RegOnline and a limited number at the registration desk.  Tickets will be $85 for regular attendees and $65 for students. Please purchase tickets early to assist the Local Committee Chair with planning the event.

What do I bring?

Compared to most previous PSG meetings at this time of year, not much! In February, the average temperature in Hawaii is in the high 70’s and low 80’s during the day (22° -30° C), and can get down to the low 60’s (16° -20° C) at night. However, despite being warm, it is also the wet season, and when it rains, expect to be soaked in 5 seconds flat. We recommend bringing a small umbrella, rain jacket, and light clothing that can be layered. Dress and attire in Hawaii is very casual and virtually anything goes. Suits are only worn by the governor and those on job interviews from the mainland.


The 2016 annual silent auction to benefit student travel will be held throughout the meeting. This event has been a great success in the past - thank you to everyone who has donated or bought items at the auction. We are soliciting donations for the auction and if you have something you would like to donate, please contact the student representative, Andrew Titmus (below). Popular auction items include artwork, photographs, crafts, books and field guides, t-shirts, field gear, and any interesting seabird memorabilia.

Thanks very much for your continued support of PSG students!

Contact for more information:
Andrew Titmus, Student Representative


There are numerous options available to students for accommodation in Turtle Bay, from room sharing at the hotels to backpacker hostels and camping. Please note the deadline of 10 Jan 2016 for PSG’s room block rates at the hotels – reservations must be made by then. Please book early for best selection. For accommodation options, please click here!

Student Room Sharing
Do you need a roommate to share costs but don’t know any other students or members?  We’ve set up a page for you to request a roommate!  While many people are able to share with friends and colleagues attending the PSG meeting, we recognize that some people, particularly students, just don’t know anybody else who is coming!  Submit your information here and we will do our best to match you up with other PSG meeting-goers.  You and your roommate(s) are responsible for making your own accommodation arrangements with the hotel or at one of the other accommodation options (e.g., VRBO and Turtle Bay condos).

Student-Mentor Social
Do you have questions about career opportunities in marine ornithology or the range of options available to you regarding seabirds and seabird conservation?  The PSG Student Representative will host the 9th Annual Student-Mentor Social on Friday 12 February 2016 at 6:30pm in the Oahu Room. Downloadable pdf with event details »

This social event is an opportunity for students to meet and learn from PSG’s members representing academia, government, NGOs, and private consulting and discuss with them careers in teaching, research, management, and policy. This event is open to all students and mentors, and we encourage participation from all career stages and professions as mentors (e.g., early career scientists, mid or late career professionals).

Food will be provided and lively discussion is guaranteed. For planning purposes, if you are interested in participating, please fill out this form. RSVP’ing isn’t strictly mandatory so please consider showing up for half an hour, or the whole night.

Please see the PSG Annual Meeting program and Registration Desk for time and room number.

Student Volunteering
Please consider donating your time to the 43rd Annual Meeting and getting involved in the PSG!  See volunteering information below! Contact Andrew Titmus for more information and how volunteering can benefit student members.

Contact for more information or questions:
Andrew Titmus, PSG Student Representative


Field trips are still available! Please sign up here

There are multiple exciting field trip options for our meeting this year, from the local day trips to multi-day neighbor island trips.

Field Trip 1 - Oahu Birding Tour for Native Birds
Date: Tues Feb 9th
Time: 7:00 AM-5:00 PM
Cost: TBD
Maximum participants: 20

This trip will take participants on a 3 mile hike on the Wiliwilinui Trail to observe the three native Oahu forest birds: Oahu Elepaio, Oahu Amakihi and Apapane. It will then continue around the southeast of Oahu stopping at Makapuu and Lanai lookout to observe Red-tailed tropicbirds, White Terns, Red-footed and Brown boobies from shore. From there the tour will conclude in Kailua where Hawaiian Coot, Hawaiian Moorhen, Hawaiian Stilt and Black-crowned Night Herons are often found in the wetlands. Participants should meet at 7am in the front entrance of the Turtle Bay Resort. Lunch is not provided, but a stop will be made for you to purchase a lunch of your choosing.

Field Trip 2 - Oahu Birding Tour for Native Birds
Date: Sun Feb 14th 
Time: 7:00 AM-5:00 PM
Cost: TBD
Maximum participants: 20

This trip will take participants on a 3 mile hike on the Wiliwilinui Trail to observe the three native Oahu forest birds: Oahu Elepaio, Oahu Amakihi and Apapane. It will then continue around the southeast of Oahu stopping at Makapuu and Lanai lookout to observe Red-tailed tropicbirds, white terns, Red-footed and Brown boobies from shore. From there the tour will conclude in Kailua where Hawaiian Coot, Hawaiian Moorhen, Hawaiian Stilt and Black-crowned night herons are often found in the wetlands.  Participants should meet at 7am in the front entrance of the Turtle Bay Resort. Lunch is not provided, but a stop will be made for you to purchase a lunch of your choosing.

Field Trip 3 - Hakalau National Wildlife Refuge Tour
Hawaii Island  45 minute flight from Honolulu, Oahu*
Date: Mon Feb 15th
Time: 6:30 am - 6:00 pm.
Cost $185 per person (including tax)
Maximum participants: 12

Named by Hawaiians long ago, Hakalau means "many perches" and is still considered critical rainforest bird habitat today. Once part of large cattle ranch, it was the first National Wildlife Refuge established in the United States for forest birds. It is home to some of the rarest plants and animal species on earth. Participants should fly into the Kona Airport on Saturday 13 February 2016. The trip departs from Waikoloa Kings’ Shops, Highway 190/200 Junction and Hawaii Forest & Trail Headquarters.

To book this trip, you must do so directly on the Hawaii Forest and Trail Website:click here.

Participants should fly into the Kona Airport on Sunday 14 February 2016. For more details click here.

*Please note that you will be responsible for your own travel costs and reservations from Oahu to any neighbor island field trip*

Hawaiian Airlines ( and Go! Airlines ( offer fares starting at $120 return from Honolulu

Contact for more information:
Lindsay Young, Local Committee Chair


Volunteers are key to a successful meeting!

Every year, a dedicated team of PSG members work behind the scenes to carefully plan and organize the annual meeting.  Join this team in Hawaii and help make the 2016 meeting a great success.  From Feb 10-13, we will need volunteers in several roles – Registration Desk, Session Chairs, Student Paper Judging, Audio-Visual, and general assistance to the Local Committee.

Volunteering is a great way to meet other members, to get involved and support the PSG.

We’d love to have your help so please select one of the volunteer options in RegOnline when you register if you are interested or contact us if you want to learn more.

Contacts for more information:
Lindsay Young, Local Committee Chair


2016 Annual Meeting, Oahu, HI
Scientific Program
Scientific Program - last minute updates included
Abstract Book

2015 Annual Meeting, San Jose, CA
Scientific Program
Abstract Book

2014 Annual Meeting, Juneau, AK
Scientific Program
Abstract Book

2013 Annual Meeting, Portland, OR
Scientific Program

Abstract Book (available soon)

For information on PSG's Annual Meetings, including Executive Council Meetings, 1974 – 2014, see Pacific Seabirds.

List of PSG Annual Meetings, 1974 – present