Habitats and Protected sites

Protected sites - European Sites

Special Protection Areas (SPAs) 

Special Protection Areas (SPAs) are sites that are awarded protection under EU law (EU Birds Directive (79/409/EEC)).Designated SPAs offer protection for certain bird species, including those that are rare and vulnerable, those that occur regularly as migrants and also wetlands that attract large numbers of migratory birds. Wexford has 9 designated SPAs. Their locations can be found here  

Special Areas of Conservation (SACs)

Special Areas of Conservation (SACs) are the prime conservation areas in Ireland. They are protected under EU law (Habitats Directive (92/43/EEC)). There are 15 candidate SACs and one designated SAC in Co. Wexford. Candidate SACs are awarded the same level of protection as fully designated SACs.  SAC and cSACs of County Wexford 

Together SPAs and SACs make up a European network of sites known collectively as Natura 2000 habitats.

Ramsar sites

Ramsar sites are wetlands of international importance designated under the Ramsar Convention. There are three Ramsar sites located in County Wexford; The Raven, Bannow Bay and Wexford Wildfowl Reserve.

Protected Sites -National Sites

Natural Heritage Areas (NHAs)

Natural Heritage Areas (NHAs) are areas outside of Natura 2000 sites that are recognised as being of nature conservation importance at a national scale. In Co. Wexford there are 27 proposed NHAs. We have one fully designated NHA at KeeraghIslands. 

Nature Reserves

Nature Reserves are protected under ministerial order as areas important to wildlife. There are 70 Nature Reserves inIreland, 3 of which are located inCountyWexford: The Raven, Ballyteige Burrow and Wexford Wildfowl Reserve.