Description of the Interest Features and their Current Condition

The site is a Special Protection Area (SPA) classified by the EU in July 1985. On 29 January 2017 the site was amended to include guillemot and a seabird assemblage.

The site is notified for the following features:

  • Arctic tern (Sterna paradisaea), Breeding
  • Common tern (Sterna hirundo), Breeding
  • Roseate tern (Sterna dougallii ), Breeding
  • Sandwich tern (Sterna sandvicensis), Breeding
  • Common guillemot (Uria aalge), Breeding
  • Seabird assemblage, Breeding

Further details of these interest features can be found in the Conservation Advice package for this site.

The Farne Islands SPA is designated for its populations of breeding seabirds. Five species of Arctic tern, Common tern, Sandwich tern, Roseate tern and common guillemot breed on the site in internationally significant numbers.

The site is also of importance for its overall assemblage of breeding birds. During the breeding season (2010-2014) , the area supported 163,819 individual seabirds (including the five species earlier). Also of importance to the assemblage are  Atlantic puffin, great cormorant, European shag and black-legged kittiwake all of which are present in nationally important numbers.

The condition of the MPA has yet to be assessed by Natural England, however a condition assessment of the underpinning SSSI from 2014 can be viewed HERE

Map of Interest Features

No mapping of SPA interest features is currently available. Mapping of priority habitats within the SPA can be viewed on the MAGIC website

Sensitivities of Interest Features

The summary given below is provided for informal guidance only. Please note that the conservation advice package and accompanying supplementary guidance on the conservation objectives produced by Natural England for the site should be referred as the definitive and official source of information about site pressures and sensitivities when making decisions about management activities or preparing Habitats Regulations Assessments.

This site is likely to be sensitive to any activities which might:

  • Negatively affects breeding populations of important breeding bird species
  • Negatively affects the availability and/or quality of breeding habitat for important bird species
  • Increases disturbance to important bird species while nesting, roosting, foraging, feeding, moulting or loafing
  • Negatively affects the safe passage for important bird species between nesting and feeding sites
  • Negatively affects food availability for the bird species for which the site is designated
  • Negatively affects water quality (including turbidity, nutrient status, contaminants and dissolved oxygen)

Overlap with other sites

This site partially overlaps with the following MPAs:

The following SSSIs overlap partially with this MPA: