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Location United Kingdom, Scotland
Central coordinates 6o 32.18' West  58o 16.39' North
IBA criteria B1i, B2, B3, C3, C6
Area 58,984 ha
Altitude 50 - 397m
Year of IBA assessment 2007

Royal Society for the Protection of Birds

Site description These peatlands cover the greater part of the island, and are interspersed with freshwater lochs and complexes of bog pools. The area is important for breeding waders, divers and raptors, and nationally for Crex crex.

Populations of IBA trigger species

Species Season Period Population estimate Quality of estimate IBA Criteria IUCN Category
Arctic Loon Gavia arctica breeding  1995  12 breeding pairs  good  C6  Least Concern 
Red-throated Loon Gavia stellata breeding  1995  80 breeding pairs  good  B2, C6  Least Concern 
Merlin Falco columbarius resident  2004  29 breeding pairs  good  C6  Least Concern 
Golden Eagle Aquila chrysaetos resident  2003  7 breeding pairs  good  B2, C6  Least Concern 
Eurasian Golden Plover Pluvialis apricaria resident  2004  1,602 breeding pairs  good  B3, C6  Least Concern 
Dunlin Calidris alpina breeding  2004  4,386 breeding pairs  good  B1i, C3  Least Concern 

Protected areas

Protected area Designation Area (ha) Relationship with IBA Overlap with IBA (ha)  
Lewis Peatlands Birds Directive 58,984 is identical to site 58,634  
Lewis Peatlands Habitats Directive 27,946 protected area contained by site 27,946  
Lewis Peatlands Wetlands of International Importance (Ramsar) 58,984 is identical to site 58,634  


IUCN habitat Habitat detail Extent (% of site)
Shrubland Heathland; Scrub  minor
Grassland   minor
Wetlands (inland) Blanket bogs; Fens, transition mires and springs; Standing freshwater  major
Coastline Scree and boulders  minor

Land use

Land-use Extent (% of site)
agriculture major
fisheries/aquaculture minor
forestry minor

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Recommended citation  BirdLife International (2014) Important Bird Areas factsheet: Lewis Peatlands. Downloaded from on 30/10/2014

To provide new information to update this factsheet or to correct any errors, please email BirdLife