SPA description
(information as published 2001)

Flannan Isles

image: SPA location map 


The Flannan Isles are a group of six rocky islands, with outlying skerries, which lie about 30 km west of Lewis in the Outer Hebrides off the north-west coast of Scotland. They provide a strategically placed nesting locality for seabirds, which feed in the rich waters off the Western Isles. The vegetation of the islands is predominantly maritime grassland. The islands are an important nesting area for a variety of seabird species, especially auks, but including Leach's Petrel Oceanodroma leucorhoa, for which they are one of only seven known nesting localities in the EU. The seabirds feed outside the SPA in nearby waters, as well as more distantly in the North Atlantic 


Qualifying species

For individual species accounts visit the Species Accounts section

This site qualifies under Article 4.1 of the Directive (79/409/EEC) by supporting populations of European importance of the following species listed on Annex I of the Directive:
During the breeding season
Leach's Storm-petrel Oceanodroma leucorhoa, 100 pairs representing at least 0.2% of the breeding population in Great Britain (Count, as at 1991)
Assemblage qualification: A seabird assemblage of international importance
The area qualifies under Article 4.2 of the Directive (79/409/EEC) by regularly supporting at least 20,000 seabirds
During the breeding season, the area regularly supports 50,000 individual seabirds including: Leach's Storm-petrel Oceanodroma leucorhoa, Puffin Fratercula arctica, Razorbill Alca torda, Guillemot Uria aalge, Kittiwake Rissa tridactyla, Fulmar Fulmarus glacialis.



Many designated sites are on private land: the listing of a site in these pages does not imply any right of public access.
Note that sites selected for waterbird species on the basis of their occurrence in the breeding, passage or winter periods also provide legal protection for these species when they occur at other times of the year.