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The American Bird Conservancy says the short-tailed albatross was killed in the Bering Sea. Federal officials say the death of the seven and a half-year-old bird is the first such by a US commercial fishing vessel since 1998.
The short-tailed albatross was once thought to be extinct but now numbers a few thousand. The dead animal had a metal leg band identifying it was from Torishima Island in Japan, where the majority of short-tailed albatross breed.
A federal programme has helped greatly reduce the number of albatross deaths caused by commercial fishing. The problem is known as by-catch, or the unintended capture of a non-targeted species.