Introduced mammals on seabird breeding islands
Seabirds include some of the most threatened taxa anywhere in the world. For example, of extant albatross species, 82% are listed as threatened, endangered, or critically endangered by the International Union for Conservation of Nature. The two leading threats to seabirds are accidental bycatch by commercial fishing operations and introduced mammals on their breeding islands. Mammals are typically brought to remote islands by humans either accidentally as stowaways on ships, or deliberately for hunting, ranching, or biological control of previously introduced species. Introduced mammals have a multitude of negative effects on seabirds including direct and indirect effects. Direct effects include predation and disruption of breeding activities, and indirect effects include habitat transformation due to overgrazing and major shifts in nutrient cycling due to a halting of nutrient subsidies from seabird excrement. There are other invasive species on islands that wreak havoc on native bird populations (e.g. brown snakes on Guam), but mammals are by far the most commonly introduced species to islands and the most detrimental to breeding seabirds. Despite efforts to remove introduced mammals from these remote islands, invasive mammals are still present on roughly 80% of islands worldwide.