North Pacific Debris and Seabird Survey – 2007

Collect and analyze data on debris densities and potential for seabird ingestion in the North Pacific during research cruise from Honolulu to San Francisco.

Project Abstract

The project, a cooperative effort between Sea Education Association and Hawaii Pacific University to collect data on densities of plastic debris and seabirds in convergence features in the open pacific during research cruises between Honolulu and San Francisco.  The project used previous oceanographic data to identify convergence features that were targeted for neuston net tows to assess plastic debris distributions, and observation surveys for seabird abundance in small scale oceanographic features (fronts/eddies).  These data were then analyzed to assess the density of debris and seabirds, and any correlation between the two.  The results of these studies were published in the Marine Pollution Bulletin, and shared through presentations at two conferences as well as websites of participating agencies.  The overall results showed that debris did tend to aggregate in lower-wind, higher atmospheric pressure deep water environments, and that seabirds tended to congregate in lower-wind shallow water environments, apart from longer range species.  Full information can be found at:

NOAA Marine Debris Program Project

4/1/2008 to 3/29/2009

Status: Closed

Location: Pacific Islands, [Hawaii]

Latitude/Longitude: 37.046322, -130.923238