Rare seabird species including Puffins, Manx shearwaters, Guillemots and Razorbills are being given extra protection after Natural Resources Minister Carl Sargeant agreed to extend the boundaries of three existing Special Protection Areas (SPA)s off the Pembrokeshire and Gwynedd coasts.
The sites where the changes are taking place are Grassholm, Skokholm and Skomer Islands in Pembrokeshire and Bardsey Island and the Aberdaron Coast in Gwynedd.The changes mean that as well as protecting the nesting sites themselves protection is being extended to areas further out to sea where the birds feed, preen and rest before and during the breeding season.
The Minister also announced he would be updating the list of species which qualify for protection at the Skomer & Skokholm and Aberdaron Coast & Bardsey Island sites.
Natural Resources Minister Carl Sargeant said:“Welsh seas support a significant proportion of the UK’s, and in some cases the world’s, breeding populations of a number of seabirds. For example more than 55% of the world's Manx shearwaters come to Skomer and Skokholm Islands in Pembrokeshire to breed.
“There are often threats to the survival of these birds at sea and I know we need to do more to fulfil the needs of seabirds in Welsh waters.