Report 548
Quantifying foraging areas of little tern around its breeding colony SPA during chick-rearing
(2015)
Parsons, M., Lawson, J., Lewis, M., Lawrence, R. & Kuepfer, A.
This report describes work undertaken between 2009 and 2013 to quantify usage of the marine environment by little tern around its breeding colony SPAs in the UK. The outputs from this work may be used to inform conservation of little tern in the marine environment, including the identification of marine SPAs, marine planning and environmental impact assessments.
 

Introduction

 

There are five species of tern breeding in Great Britain (GB), all of which are colonial ground-nesters.

In order of abundance they are: Arctic tern Sterna paradisaea (52,613 pairs), Sandwich tern S. sandvicensis (10,536 pairs), common tern S. hirundo (10,134 pairs), little tern Sternula albifrons (1,927 pairs) and roseate tern Sterna dougallii (52 pairs) (Mitchell et al 2004). The latter two species are among the rarest seabirds breeding in GB and all five species of tern are listed on Annex 1 of the EU Birds Directive (EU 2009).

The EU Birds Directive requires Member States to classify Special Protection Areas (SPA) for birds listed on Annex I of the Directive and for regularly occurring migratory species. In the UK, there are currently 28 breeding colony SPAs for which little tern is an interest feature (Stroud et al 2001). These breeding birds are protected both at their breeding colony SPA and while they are at sea through implementation of the Habitats Regulations1. However the Birds Directive is widely interpreted to require additional suitable areas for terns at sea to be identified and designated as marine SPAs. Such areas may be extensions to existing SPAs and/or completely separate areas.

 
Download 

 

You will need the free Adobe Acrobat Reader to view this document.
 
ISSN 0963 8901
 
Please cite as: Parsons, M., Lawson, J., Lewis, M., Lawrence, R. & Kuepfer, A., (2015), Quantifying foraging areas of little tern around its breeding colony SPA during chick-rearing, JNCC Report 548, ISSN 0963 8901