Public consultation on proposed Special Area of Conservation closes soon!
Wednesday 11th January 2017
Show your support for the Greater Wash potential Special Protection Area which stretches from Bridlington Bay to the boundary of the existing Outer Thames Estuary Special Protection Area in the south.
Many breeding seabirds are in decline. Between 1986 and 2014 there has been a 27% decline in the breeding seabird index and despite wintering waterbirds increasing since the 1970s they too are now in decline. The UK is globally important for seabirds, therefore establishing sites at sea specifically to protect bird species aims to prevent further decline.
A public consultation on the designation of a new Special Area of Conservation closes next week. The Greater Wash potential Special Protection Area (pSPA) stretches from Bridlington Bay in the north to the boundary of the existing Outer Thames Estuary Special Protection Area in the south. The seaward boundary extends past the 12nm UK territorial water boundary between the Humber Estuary and north of Sheringham on the North Norfolk coast. The designation of this site will build upon the network of sites being established by the UK government to protect marine habitats and wildlife referred to as the UK ‘Blue Belt’.
The Greater Wash pSPA has been proposed to protect important areas of sea used by birds such as non-breeding red throated diver, common scoter and little gull, all of which you can see off the Yorkshire coastline during winter. It is also proposed to protect the foraging areas used by sandwich, common and little tern. These three Species of European Conservation Concern breed at existing coastal SPAs which includes the Humber Estuary.
North Sea Marine Advocacy Officer with Yorkshire Wildlife Trust, Bex Lynam said: “If this site is designated it will bring real benefits to seabirds here in Yorkshire such as the breeding colony of little terns at Beacon Lagoons on the east coast. The Greater Wash pSPA will strengthen the growing network of areas protecting our valuable marine habitats and wildlife. A healthy marine environment benefits us all and I encourage everyone to support the Greater Wash pSPA formal designation.”
Yorkshire Wildlife Trust in partnership with 11 other Wildlife Trusts have been working to secure better protection for the North Sea’s wildlife and habitats since 2009. If you would like to show your support for the Greater Wash pSPA you can respond to the public consultation up until the 17th January 2017 here.