South-East Islay Skerries SAC

Status: Designated


Site overview

The Skerries islands and the rugged coastline of the Inner Hebridean island of Islay hold a nationally important population of Harbour seals. The south-east coastline areas are used by the seals as pupping, moulting and haul-out sites. These seals make up between 1.5% and 2% of the total UK population. 

MPA Type

Special Area of Conservation

Special Areas of Conservation (SACs) are strictly protected sites designated under European legislation. They contribute both to the UK MPA network and set up to protect habitat types and species considered to be most in need of conservation at a European level (excluding birds).

Designation date

1 September 2001

Surface Area

14.99 km2 (5.79 mi.2)


53.52 km (33.26 mi.)

  • Common seal (Phoca vitulina)

    Mammals that feed on fish at sea but regularly haul out on to rocky shores or inter-tidal sandbanks to rest, or to give birth and to suckle their pups. Though called ‘common’ they are actually less numerous than the grey seal, which is the other species f

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