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Vanuatu Petrel (Pterodroma occulta)

Mohamed bin Zayed Species project number 222529250

Local to global: researching Vanuatu Petrel movement ecology to track threats to gadfly petrels.

Mohamed bin Zayed Species Conservation (Project No. 222529250) - Vanuatu Petrel - Awarded $16,500 on June 01, 2023

This project aims to provide the first conservation ecology research of the Vanuatu Petrel (Pterodroma occulta), informing efforts to protect this species and other Melanesian gadfly petrels. Our team includes researchers from Monash University, the Vanuatu Department of Environmental Protection and Conservation, and local communities on Vanua Lava, Vanuatu.  


The Vanuatu Petrel was first described in 2001 based on 7 museum specimens, and the only known breeding colony was discovered in 2009. Very little is known about this seabird, including its range, population size, and conservation status. This is concerning, as several potential threats to the species have been documented on Vanua Lava, including invasive species such as rats and cats. We are conducting research to understand the significance of these threats and the status of the Vanuatu Petrel to provide appropriate conservation interventions.    

Project 222529250 location - Vanuatu, Oceania