The Yelkouan Shearwater Project is Malta’s largest conservation initiative. It is
important because the Maltese Islands are home to approximately 10% of the world’s
population of Yelkouan Shearwaters (Puffinus yelkouan).
The main aim of the project is to protect the birds at the largest breeding site,
Rdum tal-Madonna, in the
North of Malta. The Project will also improve this protected site for wildlife and
visitors. At a national level, we aim to increase breeding pairs by the end of the
project in 2010 and to set an example for the management of other protected sites
in Malta. We will also be finding out more about the areas that the birds use at sea, so that these can be protected as Marine Special Protection Areas.
One of the strengths of the project is that it is a partnership of four government
authorities and three conservation organisations. The project is 50% funded by the
EU Life Nature Fund. MEPA and HSBC are also supporting the project with
financial contributions. This partnership approach is an innovative way of working
in Malta and will ensure we achieve our project aims and secure the long term future
for the birds.