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Location Iceland, Nordur-Ísafjardarsýsla
Central coordinates 22o 36.00' West  66o 28.00' North
IBA criteria A4i, A4ii, A4iii, B1i, B1ii, B3
Area 1,000 ha
Altitude 0 - 489m
Year of IBA assessment 2000

Fuglavernd - BirdLife Iceland (Partner Designate)

Site description Mainland sea cliffs in the extreme north-west of Iceland. Recreation is the main human activity in the area. There is no permanent settlement in the neighbourhood. Eggs are collected traditionally from auks at certain places along the cliff.

Key Biodiversity The site supports a huge number of breeding seabirds. A total of 70,000 pairs of Alca torda nest at this site and at Hornbjarg (site 001) combined, although it is more common at this site, while less than 10,000 pairs of Fratercula arctica nest at the two sites in total (probably closer to 4,000-5,000 pairs).

Populations of IBA trigger species

Species Season Period Population estimate Quality of estimate IBA Criteria IUCN Category
Black-legged Kittiwake Rissa tridactyla breeding  1985  195,000 breeding pairs  good  A4i, B1i  Least Concern 
Common Murre Uria aalge breeding  1985  237,000-674,000 breeding pairs  good  A4ii, B1ii  Least Concern 
Thick-billed Murre Uria lomvia breeding  1985  214,000-612,000 breeding pairs  good  A4ii, B1ii  Least Concern 
Razorbill Alca torda breeding  35,000 breeding pairs  poor  A4ii, B1ii, B3  Near Threatened 
A4iii Species group - seabirds breeding  1985  500,000-999,999 breeding pairs  unknown  A4iii   
A4iii Species group - waterbirds breeding  1985  100,000-499,999 breeding pairs  unknown  A4iii   

Protected areas

Protected area Designation Area (ha) Relationship with IBA Overlap with IBA (ha)  
Hornstrandir Nature Reserve 61,115 protected area contains site 1,000  


IUCN habitat Habitat detail Extent (% of site)
Coastline Sea cliffs and rocky shores  100%

Land use

Land-use Extent (% of site)
tourism/recreation -

Protection status National High International None 1,000 ha of IBA covered by Nature Reserve (Landscape) (Hornstrandir, 58,000 ha).

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Recommended citation  BirdLife International (2015) Important Bird and Biodiversity Area factsheet: Hælavíkurbjarg. Downloaded from on 30/11/2015

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