The winner of the CMS Thesis Award in 2008 was Dr Samantha Petersen of South Africa for her work entitled ‘Understanding and Mitigating Vulnerable Bycatch in southern African Trawl and Longline Fisheries’. By-catch is a major concern to CMS as it affects a number of migratory species including albatrosses and petrels, marine turtles, sharks and cetaceans. The second and third places were taken by Dr Lin Xia with her thesis on ‘Traffic Disturbance to the Migration of Tibetan Antelopes (Pantholops hodgsoni) in Hoh-xil National Nature Reserve’ and Dr Ross Wanless with research on ‘Impacts of the introduced house mouse on the seabirds of Gough Island’.
For the second time in 2008, 32 candidates from 18 countries submitted abstracts of their theses on subjects covering all continents. The main criteria for the jury of experts in selecting a winner were the importance of the species for the Bonn Convention as well as new data and insights into the biology of migratory species that can help to better conserve them during their migration.