The Seabird Ecological Assessment Network (SEANET) is the only coordinated Beached Bird project on the Atlantic coast of the U.S. It was started in 2003 in Buzzard’s Bay, MA. Now, it consists of a network of volunteers from Maine to Florida. There are many global threats facing seabirds: emerging infectious diseases; interactions with fisheries; harmful algal blooms; contaminants (e.g. heavy metals, pesticides); plastics and overfishing of seabird prey items.
The goals of SEANET are to: 1) bring together interdisciplinary researchers and members of the public (i.e. citizen scientists) in a long-term collaborative effort, 2) provide baseline information about bird mortality; 3) help to detect mass mortality events due to oil spills, toxins or disease outbreaks, 4) examine the spatial pattern of bird carcass deposition and how it varies across time, and 5) highlight that seabirds can serve as indicators of the marine ecosystem. The SEANET program does not require expert birding skills or travel to remote locations or specialized equipment.