Marine Scotland Everlasting safety for flapper skate

Everlasting safety for flapper skate

February 1, 2022 by | Class Session, Marine Surroundings, Marine Scotland normal, Marine Scotland Surveys

A session has been launched to collect views on making a Marine Protected Space (MPA) which is defending the critically endangered flapper skate within the Internal Sound of Skye, everlasting.

The Purple Rocks and Longay Marine Protected Space (MPA) was urgently designated in March 2021, following discovery of the most important flapper skate nursery space in Scotland with the positioning being deemed nationally vital for the conservation of the species.

On the time a spread of measures had been quickly introduced in to ban marine actions inside the web site resembling: sure kinds of fishing, diving and building to make sure the flapper skate and their eggs weren’t disturbed.

Little is understood about flapper skate breeding grounds and habits on account of their rarity. Their eggs take round 18 months to hatch and will be delicate to disruption from marine actions throughout this significant time.

Flapper skate eggs Copyright NatureScot

Flapper skate had been traditionally considerable within the North-east Atlantic and broadly distributed within the seas surrounding the British Isles. Nonetheless this has diminished considerably and the flapper skate now solely happens within the northern North Sea, off Northern Eire’s north-east coast and off Scotland’s north-west coast.

Now thought of its personal species, it was as soon as thought that flapper skate and blue skate had been the identical species, known as widespread skate. Flapper skate (Dipturus intermedius) and blue skate (Dipturus batis) at the moment are referred to as a part of the widespread skate complicated. Widespread skate are additionally a protected characteristic of the Loch Sunart to the Sound of Jura MPA.

Flapper skate Red Rocks and Longay MPA map

Through the gathering of proof and evaluation to assist the everlasting web site designation for the conservation of flapper skate, vital parts of the Quaternary of Scotland geodiversity characteristic had been recognized. These are functionally linked to the flapper skate by offering appropriate habitat for egg-laying and has been proposed as a second protected characteristic of the positioning.

In addition to the session, an  extension to  the present pressing safety measures to make sure the safety inside the web site is being introduced in by way of an Pressing Continuation Order. It will guarantee protections stay in place while the general public session on the proposals to make the positioning a everlasting MPA with an MCO is undertaken. It will come into drive on 16 March 2022.

Participate within the session to completely designate the Purple Rocks and Longay MPA.

The session will run for 12 weeks, from 1 February 2022 to 26 April 2022. The session is proposing to take away scallop diving and leisure diving from the listing of prohibited actions within the draft Marine Conservation Order (MCO). These actions will likely be faraway from the pressing MCO as quickly as within reason practicable, to ensure that these prohibitions to not stay in place for any longer than is critical.


That is the second pressing Marine Protected Space (MPA) to be created utilizing powers inside the Marine (Scotland) Act 2010, the primary being the Loch Carron pressing MPA created to guard flame shell beds in 2017. The Loch Carron MPA was made everlasting in 2019.

Scotland’s Marine Protected Space (MPA) community covers in extra of 37% of our sea space, exceeding the proposed new world goal of 30% protection by 2030.

Following additional surveys to collect proof for the everlasting web site in August and September 2021, a major variety of flapper skate eggs had been found north of the unique web site. Scottish Ministers decided there was a must urgently prolong the boundary of the urgently designated Purple Rocks and Longay MPA within the interim. The MPA was prolonged in December 2021.

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