The status of ‘qualifying’ species on individual SPAs


The legal list of qualifying species, for which a Special Protection Area (SPA) has been selected and is managed, is given on the relevant SPA citation (available from the country agency concerned).  A review of the UK network of SPAs was co-ordinated by JNCC in the late 1990s.  Following formal submission to, and agreement by, relevant Ministers, the results were published in 2001. 

However, it is taking some time to revise all the relevant SPA citations in light of the review.  Where there is a mismatch between species listed in extant citations and listed in the 2001 Review for the same sites, there has been confusion as to the ‘correct’ list of qualifying species to be used at any site for purposes of management, assessment and development control.

At sites where there remain differences between species listed in the 2001 Review and the extant site citation, then the relevant country agency should be contacted for further guidance.

Note that as a matter of Government policy, potential SPAs are treated as if formally classified.  These are sites on which Government has initiated public consultation on the scientific case for classification as a Special Protection Area.