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OSLO (Reuters) - A new atlas of the world's oceans issued on Tuesday shows more than 3,000 sites important to seabirds from albatrosses to penguins as part of a drive to improve conservation.

The free online atlas (www.birdlife.org/datazone/marine) could help governments plan, for instance, where to set up wildlife protection areas at sea or where to permit offshore wind turbines or oil and gas exploration, they said.

The atlas, showing areas vital to birds including pelicans, sandpipers, cormorants and skuas, was compiled by BirdLife International, drawing on work by 1,000 bird experts, government ministries and secretariats of U.N. Conventions.

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