Breeding seabirds in Welsh waters to get better protection

Richard Harrington By: Richard Harrington
Date posted: 7 October 2014

Breeding seabirds in Welsh waters to get better protection MCS says an announcement made today (7th October 2014) by the Welsh Government is good news for internationally important populations of breeding seabirds in Welsh waters.

Breeding seabirds in Welsh waters to get better protection MCS says an announcement made today (7th October 2014) by the Welsh Government is good news for internationally important populations of breeding seabirds in Welsh waters. The Welsh Government has approved extensions of three Special Protection Areas (SPAs) which will help iconic species such as the Atlantic puffin and Manx shearwater which choose to visit Welsh waters every year to lay eggs and rear their chicks. The changes mean that these seabirds will now have greater protection from damaging activities not only at their nesting sites but also in the surrounding waters which many seabirds depend on to feed, preen and socialise - spending time in the water where they can get disturbed by fast-moving small craft or get entangled in fishing gear, such as gill nets. The extensions will increase the size of the Grassholm, Skokholm & Skomer, and Aberdaron Coast & Bardsey Island SPAs. MCS says it’s now vital that steps are taken to ensure all these sites are well managed. “This is a welcome step in the right direction for Welsh Government, but there is still more work to do to increase protection for our precious marine wildlife before the Welsh contribution to a UK ecologically coherent network of Marine Protected Areas is complete,” says Clare Reed, MCS Welsh Policy Officer.

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