The Spanish government has announced the establishment of 39 new marine protection areas which closely mirror the Marine Important Bird and Biodiversity Areas identified by BirdLife International’s Spanish partner SEO/BirdLife after a decade of scientific research tracking seabirds and understanding their behaviour at sea.
The Balearic shearwater is one of the birds
that will benefit from the new protection areas
The new sites are Special Protection Areas for Birds (SPAs), designated under the European Birds Directive. The SPAs will offer protection to seabirds whilst they are at sea, complementing the existing network of sites on land.
Spain, with its Atlantic and Mediterranean coastlines and islands, is extremely important for European seabirds, including Europe’s most threatened seabird, the Balearic Shearwater, and other species endemic to the Mediterranean, such as the Yelkouan Shearwater and Audouin’s Gull.