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Location Denmark, Ringkøbing Amtskommune
Central coordinates 8o 15.00' East  56o 0.00' North
IBA criteria A4i, A4iii, B1i, B2, B3, C2, C3, C4, C6
Area 27,720 ha
Altitude 0 - 15m
Year of IBA assessment 2000

Dansk Ornitologisk Forening

Site description A shallow brackish fjord, encompassing several small islands, and connected by sluices to the North Sea, with meadows and reedbeds to the south.

Key Biodiversity Numbers of many breeding and visiting waterbirds have declined dramatically due to deteriorating water quality. Several species listed on Annex I of the EC Birds Directive breed at the site, including Botaurus stellaris, Circus aeruginosus, Porzana porzana, Recurvirostra avosetta, Philomachus pugnax, Sterna sandvicensis, S. hirundo, S. paradisaea and Asio flammeus.

Populations of IBA trigger species

Species Season Period Population estimate Quality of estimate IBA Criteria IUCN Category
Pink-footed Goose Anser brachyrhynchus non-breeding  1994  8,000 individuals  A4i, B1i, C3  Least Concern 
Tundra Swan Cygnus columbianus non-breeding  1994  1,091 individuals  A4i, B1i, B2, C2, C6  Least Concern 
Common Teal Anas crecca non-breeding  1994  6,900 individuals  B1i, C3  Least Concern 
Eurasian Bittern Botaurus stellaris breeding  1994  10 breeding pairs  good  B2, C6  Least Concern 
Great Cormorant Phalacrocorax carbo breeding  1994  1,000 breeding pairs  good  B1i, C3  Least Concern 
Pied Avocet Recurvirostra avosetta breeding  1994  592-670 breeding pairs  good  A4i, B1i, B3, C2, C6  Least Concern 
Common Redshank Tringa totanus breeding  1992  530 breeding pairs  B2  Least Concern 
Black-tailed Godwit Limosa limosa breeding  1994  266-272 breeding pairs  good  B2  Near Threatened 
Bar-tailed Godwit Limosa lapponica passage  1,000 individuals  good  A4i, B1i, C2  Near Threatened 
Sandwich Tern Thalasseus sandvicensis breeding  1996  1,024 breeding pairs  good  A4i, B1i, B2, C2, C6  Least Concern 
A4iii Species group - waterbirds unknown  1994  20,000-49,999 individuals  unknown  A4iii, C4   

IBA Monitoring

2010 very high very unfavourable not assessed
Good - based on reliable and complete / representative data

Invasive & other problematic species, genes & diseases problematic native species/diseases - named species happening now some of area/population (10-49%) slow but significant deterioration medium
Natural system modifications dams & water management/use - abstraction of ground water (agricultural use) happening now small area/few individuals (<10%) slow but significant deterioration low
Natural system modifications other ecosystem modifications happening now small area/few individuals (<10%) slow but significant deterioration low
Pollution agricultural & forestry effluents - type unknown/unrecorded happening now whole area/population (>90%) very rapid to severe deterioration very high

Anser anser Greylag Goose 5153 3605 individuals 70 near favourable
Branta leucopsis Barnacle Goose 30000 30000 individuals 100 favourable
Tadorna tadorna Common Shelduck 2000 650 individuals 33 very unfavourable
Platalea leucorodia Eurasian Spoonbill 14 14 individuals 100 favourable
Falco peregrinus 5 4 individuals 80 near favourable
Circus aeruginosus Western Marsh-harrier 14 1 breeding pairs 8 very unfavourable
Recurvirostra avosetta Pied Avocet 2243 2020 individuals 91 favourable
Recurvirostra avosetta Pied Avocet 592 87 breeding pairs 15 very unfavourable
Tringa totanus Common Redshank 961 142 breeding pairs 15 very unfavourable
Limosa limosa Black-tailed Godwit 266 75 breeding pairs 29 very unfavourable
Calidris alpina Dunlin 200 20 breeding pairs 10 very unfavourable
Calidris alpina Dunlin 20000 6300 individuals 32 very unfavourable
Calidris pugnax Ruff 309 35 breeding pairs 12 very unfavourable
Larus ridibundus Black-headed Gull 7500 4000 individuals 54 unfavourable
Sterna paradisaea Arctic Tern 154 11 breeding pairs 8 very unfavourable
Lanius collurio Red-backed Shrike 4 1 breeding pairs 25 very unfavourable

Protected areas

Protected area Designation Area (ha) Relationship with IBA Overlap with IBA (ha)  
Ringkobing Fjord Wetlands of International Importance (Ramsar) 27,720 protected area overlaps with site 27,720  


IUCN habitat Habitat detail Extent (% of site)
Grassland Humid grasslands  5%
Wetlands (inland) Tidal rivers and enclosed tidal waters; Water fringe vegetation  -
Unknown   5%
Coastline Salt marshes  -

Land use

Land-use Extent (% of site)
agriculture 10%
unknown 90%

Protection status National High International High27,520 ha of IBA covered by Ramsar Site (Ringkøbing Fjord, 27,520 ha). 27,720 ha of IBA covered by Special Protection Area (Ringkøbing Fjord, 27,720 ha).

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Recommended citation  BirdLife International (2016) Important Bird and Biodiversity Area factsheet: Ringkøbing Fjord. Downloaded from on 27/10/2016

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