Denmark Designates Three Ramsar Sites in Faroe Islands
23 June 2012: The Secretariat of the Convention on Wetlands of International Importance (Ramsar Convention) has announced that the Government of Denmark has designated three new Wetlands of International Importance in the Faroe Islands.
According to Ramsar, the three sites are extremely significant sites for seabirds and all of them are Important Bird Areas under BirdLife International. Threats to the sites include climate-related ecological changes, the possible introduction of rats to the island and possible tourism-related disturbances.
The first site, Mykines, consists of grassy slopes, sea cliffs and the surrounding sea. It provides breeding and feeding habitat for an estimated 250,000 pairs of seabirds of 15 species, many of them of European importance. Activities carried out on the site include hay making, agriculture, sheep pastures, fishing, tourism and traditional seabird hunting.
The second site, Nolsoy (Nólsoy), consists of grassy and stony slopes as well as the surrounding sea area. It provides breeding and feeding habitat for various species of seabirds. Activities carried out on the site include agriculture, sheep pastures, ornithological research, fishing, traditional hunting of seabirds and tourism.
The third site, Skuvoy (Skúvoy and Skúgvoy), consists of grassy slopes and sea cliffs. It provides breeding habitat for large concentrations of up to 280,000 pairs of seabirds. Activities carried out on the site include hay making, agriculture, sheep pastures, fishing, research, tourism, and traditional seabird hunting and chick collection.
Denmark's designations contribute to one of the goals contained in the Ramsar Convention's Strategic Plan for 2009-2015, which is to reach a protected area of 250 million hectares by 2015. [Ramsar Press Release]