|Central coordinates||146o 22.34' East 43o 44.32' South|
|IBA criteria||A1, A4ii|
|Altitude||0 - 134m|
|Year of IBA assessment||2009|
Summary Mewstone supports more than 1% of the world population of the near threatened Shy Albatross and more than 1% of the world population of Fairy Prion.
Site description Mewstone is a rocky oval-shaped 9 ha island, about 20 km south of Red Point, between Southport and Port Davey in south-west Tasmania. Composed of Muscovite granite, which is unknown elsewhere in the South-west National Park, the island is very steep and mostly bare jagged rock. The few plant species present on the island are confined to crevices and cavities in the rock where soil has accumulated. An estimated 7500 pairs of Shy Albatross accounts for 60% of the world population; and an estimated 20,000 pairs of Fairy Prion also breed, mostly in crevices and under boulders along the boulder-strewn summit ridge of the island.
Key Biodiversity Other species recorded at Mewstone by Brothers et al. (2001) were Black-faced Cormorant (at least 20 and perhaps up to 30 pairs), Silver Gull (a few pairs and at least 40 roosting birds), Australasian Gannet (individuals occasionally observed loafing), Buller's Albatross (one individual seen over several seasons with Shy Albatrosses), Peregrine Falcon and Forest Raven.
Non-bird biodiversity: Up to 50 Australian Fur Seal haul out on ledges on the east and south sides of the island and on the SE rock. White (1981) recorded the land snail Tasmanembryon tasmanicus and noted that Tasmanian Tree Skink were abundant. Senecio leptocarpus, Senecio lautus, Carpobrotus rossii, Poa poiformis, Asplenium obtusatum, Chenopodium glaucum and Sarcocornia quinqueflora were the only plants found.
|Species||Season||Period||Population estimate||Quality of estimate||IBA Criteria||IUCN Category|
|Shy Albatross Thalassarche cauta||resident||1997-2005||7,380-7,500 breeding pairs||good||A1, A4ii||Near Threatened|
|Fairy Prion Pachyptila turtur||resident||1977-1990||20,000 breeding pairs||poor||A4ii||Least Concern|
|2008||medium||not assessed||not assessed|
|Good - based on reliable and complete / representative data|
|Over-exploitation, persecution and control of species||fishing & harvesting aquatic resources - unintentional effects: large scale||happening now||some of area/population (10-49%)||slow but significant deterioration||medium|
|Protected area||Designation||Area (ha)||Relationship with IBA||Overlap with IBA (ha)|
|Southwest||National Park||618,267||protected area contains site||9|
|IUCN habitat||Habitat detail||Extent (% of site)|
|Coastline||Sea cliffs, rocky shores & rocky islets||100%|
Land ownership Land owned by the Tasmanian State Government and managed by the Department of Primary Industries and Water.
|Land-use||Extent (% of site)|
|nature conservation and research||100%|
Protection status Part of Southwest National Park.
Access/Land-Owner requests Access is prohibited to protect nesting albatrosses.
Acknowledgements The nomination was prepared by Peter Britton. Aleks Terauds and Sheryl Hamilton kindly supplied data. Rachael Alderman and Rosemary Gales of DPIW kindly commented on the nomination.
References BirdLife International (2007) Species factsheet: Thalassarche cauta. Downloaded from http://www.birdlife.org on 29/6/2007
Brothers, N., Pemberton, D., Pryor, H. and Halley, V. (2001) Tasmania's Offshore Islands: Seabirds and other natural features. Tasmanian Museum and Art Gallery: Hobart.
White, G. (1981) Islands of south-west Tasmania. A. T. Sutton & Co. Pty Ltd: Sydney.
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Recommended citation BirdLife International (2015) Important Bird Areas factsheet: Mewstone. Downloaded from http://www.birdlife.org on 27/04/2015
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