SPA description
(information as published 2001)

Cape Wrath 

image: SPA location map 


Cape Wrath lies at the north-westernmost tip of mainland Scotland in Sutherland. The site comprises two stretches of Torridonian sandstone and Lewisian gneiss cliffs (of c. 15 km length) around the headland of Cape Wrath. These cliffs provide suitable nest sites for large numbers of breeding seabirds. West of Cape Wrath, the cliffs are broken with undercliffs vegetated by Heather Calluna vulgaris, Juniper Juniperus communis and ferns, whilst east of the headland, far more precipitous cliffs rise to about 200 m. Cape Wrath is especially important for gulls and auks. The seabirds feed outside the SPA in the nearby waters and more distantly in the North Atlantic.


Qualifying species

For individual species accounts visit the Species Accounts section


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: 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.