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Encyclopedia > Site of Special Scientific Interest

A Site of Special Scientific Interest or SSSI is a conservation designation denoting a protected area in the United Kingdom. SSSIs are the basic 'building block' of nature conservation legislation and most other legal nature/geological conservation designations are based upon them, including National Nature Reserves, Ramsar Sites, Special Protection Areas, and Special Areas of Conservation. A conservation designation is a name and/or acronym which explains the status of an area of land in terms of conservation or protection. ... National Nature Reserve is a United Kingdom government conservation designation for a nature reserve of national significance. ... The Ramsar Convention is an international treaty for the conservation and sustainable utilization of wetlands, i. ... A Special Protection Area or SPA is a designation under the European Commission Directive on the Conservation of Wild Birds (79/409/EEC). ... A Special Area of Conservation (SAC) is defined in the European Commission Habitats Directive (92/43/EEC), also known as the Directive on the Conservation of Natural Habitats and of Wild Fauna and Flora. ...

The process of designating a site as a Special Scientific Interest is called notification; it involves a number of steps, including consultation with the site's owner. If a site passes through this process and becomes a SSSI it is said to have been "notified". Sites which are notified due to their biological interest are commonly known as Biological SSSIs, and those which are notified for their geological interest Geological SSSIs. A minority of sites are notified for both their biological and geological interest.

In selecting sites for SSSI status, English Nature, the designating body for SSSIs in England, uses the 1974-1996 county system, calling each county-like area an Area of Search English Nature is the United Kingdom Government Agency that promotes the conservation of wildlife, geology and wild places throughout England. ... Motto: (French for God and my right) Anthem: Multiple unofficial anthems Capital London Largest city London Official language(s) English (de facto) Unification    - by Athelstan AD 927  Area    - Total 130,395 km² (1st in UK)   50,346 sq mi  Population    - 2005 est. ... Metropolitan and non-metropolitan counties are a level of subnational division of England used for the purposes of local government. ... Areas of Search (AoS) are geographical areas used in the selection of Sites of Special Scientific Interest. ...


Legal status

The government has a power to designate as an SSSI any area of land which it considers to be of special interest by virtue of its fauna, flora, geological or physiographical features. Fauna is a collective term for animal life. ... Divisions Green algae Chlorophyta Charophyta Land plants (embryophytes) Non-vascular plants (bryophytes) Marchantiophyta - liverworts Anthocerotophyta - hornworts Bryophyta - mosses Vascular plants (tracheophytes) †Rhyniophyta - rhyniophytes †Zosterophyllophyta - zosterophylls Lycopodiophyta - clubmosses †Trimerophytophyta - trimerophytes Equisetophyta - horsetails Pteridophyta - true ferns Psilotophyta - whisk ferns Ophioglossophyta - adderstongues Seed plants (spermatophytes) †Pteridospermatophyta - seed ferns Pinophyta - conifers Cycadophyta - cycads Ginkgophyta... This article does not cite its references or sources. ...

The designation can be made by English Nature, Scottish Natural Heritage, the Countryside Council for Wales or the Environment and Heritage Service (Northern Ireland). In Northern Ireland some areas are designated as Areas Of Special Scientific Interest under the Nature Conservation and Amenity Lands (Northern Ireland) Order 1985, which is essentially the same as SSSI legislation. An SSSI is not necessarily open to the public, or owned by a conservation organisation or by the Government — in fact, they can be owned by anybody. English Nature is the United Kingdom Government Agency that promotes the conservation of wildlife, geology and wild places throughout England. ... Scottish Natural Heritage (SNH) is a Scottish public body . ... The Countryside Council for Wales (Welsh: Cyngor Cefn Gwlad Cymru) is the United Kingdom Governments wildlife conservation authority for Wales. ... The Environment and Heritage Service is the United Kingdom Governments conservation agency for Northern Ireland. ... Motto: [citation needed] (French for God and my right)2 Anthem: UK: God Save the Queen Regional: (de facto) Londonderry Air Capital Belfast Largest city Belfast Official language(s) English (de facto), Irish, Ulster Scots 3, NI Sign Language Government Constitutional monarchy  - Queen Queen Elizabeth II  - Prime Minister Tony Blair...

The current legal framework for SSSIs is provided by the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981, amended 1985, and the protection of SSSIs was enhanced by the Countryside and Rights of Way Act 2000. The Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981 is an Act of Parliament in the United Kingdom which aims to protect the wildlife and countryside of the United Kingdom. ... 1985 (MCMLXXXV) was a common year starting on Tuesday of the Gregorian calendar. ... The Countryside and Rights of Way Act 2000 is a UK act of parliament which came into force on November 30, 2000. ...

List of SSSIs

A page of links to lists of English, Welsh and Scottish SSSIs can be found here. The following is a list of Sites of Special Scientific Interest, grouped by Area of Search: Category: ...

ASSIs in Northern Ireland

Larne Lough is a lough or inlet in County Antrim, Northern Ireland, near the town of Larne along Irelands northeast coast. ...

See also

This page gives an overview of the complex structure of environmental and cultural conservation in the United Kingdom. ... The following is a list of Sites of Special Scientific Interest, grouped by Area of Search: Category: ...

External links

  • Countryside Council for Wales website with online directory of all Welsh SSSIs
  • English Nature website with online searchable directory of all English SSSIs
  • Scottish Natural Heritage website with online directory of all Scottish SSSIs
  • The history of SSSIs

  Results from FactBites:
Sites of Special Scientific Interest - MSN Encarta (573 words)
Sites of Special Scientific Interest, in the United Kingdom, term designating areas of land that are protected to ensure the maintenance and enrichment of their characteristic diversity of wildlife and natural features.
Sites of Special Scientific Interest (SSSIs) are notified under the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981, in recognition of their special biological or geological interest.
Before notification takes place, the site is surveyed with the permission of the owner or occupier, after which the council of the notifying body decides if the site is to be notified or not.
The Annotated Ramsar List: United Kingdom (15037 words)
The site is notable for its ecological diversity, from characteristic sedge fen to fen meadow, chalk grassland, Alnus/Salix carr and ancient woodland (Fraxinus, Quercus, Betula).
The site is of particular importance for several species of breeding waders, and nationally important numbers of ducks and swans breed or winter at the site.
The site is a complex of rain-fed, brackish, floodplain grazing marsh with ditches and intertidal marsh and mudflat.
  More results at FactBites »



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