Pacific Seabird Group  43rd Annual Meeting

Pacific Seabird Group
43rd Annual Meeting

Seabirds: Responses and Resilience

Scientific Program Chair: Nina Karnovsky, PhD
Local Committee Chair: Lindsay Young, PhD


The Pacific Seabird Group invites you to join us at our 43rd Annual meeting from 10-13 February, 2016 at Turtle Bay, Oahu, Hawaii with seabird professionals from across North America and the Pacific.

As home to some of the greatest plant and animal biodiversity on the planet in addition to some of the world’s largest seabird colonies, Hawaii offers the perfect venue for PSG’s annual meeting and serves as a mid-point between our membership which spans the Pacific Rim and beyond. In keeping with our locale this year, the meeting theme is “Seabirds: Responses and Resilience” and there will be a variety of technical sessions and symposia in keeping with this theme.

We have worked hard to provide an exciting and affordable meeting for everyone, and we hope to see you in Hawaii!

2016 Meeting Organisers

  • Lindsay YoungLocal Committee Chair
  • Nina KarnovskyScientific Program Chair
  • Joanna SmithAwards Committee Chair and PSG Past Chair
  • Andrew TitmusPSG Student representative
  • Christine OguraPSG Treasurer
  • Kathy Kuletz – PSG Chair
  • Jane Dolliver – PSG Secretary

Important Dates:
Proposals for Special Paper Sessions, Symposia and Plenary Speakers: 15 August 2015
Early Registration Opens: 21 August 2015
Abstracts and Travel Award Applications Opens:  21 August 2015
Travel Award Application Deadline: EXTENDED! 20 November 2015
Abstract Submission Deadline: EXTENDED! 30 November 2015
Abstract and Travel Award Notification: 7 December 2015
Early Registration Ends - rates increase $50 USD: 18 December 2015
Regular Registration Period Begins: 19 December 2015
Last Date to Accept Travel Awards:  30 December 2015
Last day to reserve a hotel room block at a discounted rate: 10 January 2016

Meeting Overview:

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

Meeting Program and Schedule:
Coming soon!

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


Registration now open!

Early Bird Registration rates before Dec 18th are:
Member: $285.00
Non-Member: $330.00
Student Member: $155.00
Student Non-Member: $180.00
Day Fee: $130.00

**All rates will have a $10 registration site charge added to the above totals. After the early registration deadline (18 December), rates in all categories will increase by $50**

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


"Seabirds: Responses and Resilience"
Abstract submission now open!

Deadline for abstract submission: EXTENDED to 30 November 2015!

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.

Please submit all abstracts at and follow the directions provided. You can submit your abstract without completing payment for registration at this time but remember to return and pay before the early bird registration ends!

See you in Hawaii!

Nina Karnovsky, Scientific Program Chair

Abstract Format
An abstract must conform to the following guidelines; abstracts will not be accepted otherwise.

  • English language
  • 1,750 characters, with spaces (~250 words)
  • Authors and affiliations. Please include email addresses for both presenting and corresponding authors, if different.
  • No pictures, tables, or graphs.
  • Include species names for all seabirds and other taxa. Place in parentheses after the common name.

Contributed Sessions
Oral presentations will be grouped by topic; depending on the number of contributors, topics may be combined. We will do our best to accommodate authors' preferences for oral or poster presentations and session topics.

Behaviour; Breeding Biology; Climate Change; Conservation Biology; Contaminants & Marine Debris; Fisheries; Foraging Ecology; Genetics; Management, Policy, and/or Planning; Non-breeding Biology; Physiology; Population Biology; Restoration & Eradication; Tools & Techniques; and Tracking & Distribution.

Please see Travel Awards below if you are looking for financial assistance to attend the 43rd Annual Meeting.

Special Paper Sessions and Symposia
The 2016 annual meeting has four Special Paper Sessions and one Symposium. All are open to contributed papers. Please read the descriptions and contact the session coordinators to discuss and let them know you are interested in contributing an abstract.

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 - 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)

SPS6 - 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)

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 Award Applications now accepted:

  • Application Deadline: EXTENDED to 20 November 2015!
  • Notifications: 7 December 2015

PSG is pleased to be able to offer travel awards to assist with travel expenses for attendees that require financial assistance.  Every year the PSG Silent Auction raises money that is used the following year to cover a portion of travel expenses for students and international scientists.   

PSG accepts applications in one of three categories:  1) full-time students from US or Canada; 2)  full-time students not from US or Canada; 3) scientists not from US or Canada.

The criteria for a 2016 Travel Award is as follows: 1) PSG membership, 2) submitted and accepted abstract for a poster or oral presentation at the 43rd annual meeting, 3) attend and accept travel award at PSG Member’s Meeting during the 43rd Annual Meeting. 

To apply for a 2016 travel award, please submit an abstract during the abstract submission period and tell us in 250 words or less (1,750 characters, with spaces) why you deserve and need this travel award from PSG.   The application for a travel award is found on the PSG RegOnline.  It is recommended that you prepare your 250 word justification in a word processing application (e.g, MS Word) before starting the RegOnline process, and copy and paste the text into the box provided by RegOnline.  

In your justification, please include: 1) where you are traveling from; 2) estimate cost for transportation and accomodation; 3) others funds available to you; 4) how PSG Travel Award would be spent; 5) total financial request to PSG; and 6) have you previously presented or attended a PSG meeting and if so, how many times?

Notification will be provided by 7 December and travel awards must be accepted by notifying the Travel Award Chair in writing (email) by 30 December 2015. All travel awards that are not accepted will be redistributed to other applicants on 1 January 2016.

Please note: Students may receive only one travel award within a three-year period.  For 2016 awards, students must not have previously received a travel award in any of the last three years 2015- 2014-2013 (San Jose, CA; Juneau, AK; Portland, OR)

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

Room rates at the newly renovated conference venue - Turtle Bay Resort - are $299 USD per night plus tax and resort fee. The PSG room rates must be reserved no later than 10 Jan 2016! Booking instructions are below; for alternative accommodation suggestions please see below.

To reserve your room at Turtle Bay, please click here.

Select your preferred dates and room style. Your contact details and billing information are needed to complete the reservation. Please note that the Group policy requires two nights deposit at the time of booking and there is a 30-day cancellation prior to arrival for refundable deposit. Cancellations must be received 30 days prior to arrival to avoid full forfeiture of the advance prepayment. Daily resort fee is $35 plus taxes per night. You can also call toll free at 1-866-827-5231 and mention that you are part of the Pacific Seabird Group (PSG) meeting to receive the meeting rate.

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 Mentoring Dinner
Do you have questions about career opportunities in marine ornithology or what options are available to you for seabirds and conservation?  We will once again have a student/mentor dinner on 12 February This will be an opportunity for students to meet some of PSG’s more long standing members, as well as a chance for students to learn about career paths covering academia, government, teaching, research, management, and policy. This event is open to everyone and we encourage participation from all members from all career stages. Food will be provided and lively discussion is guaranteed. For planning purposes, if you are interested in participating, please fill out this form, however RSVP’ing isn’t strictly mandatory, so please consider showing up for half an hour, or the whole night. Stay tuned for more information regarding time and place.

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:
Andrew Titmus, Student Representative


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.  Trip departure information and other details will be available soon.

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.  Trip departure information and other details will be available soon.

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.

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