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Bean Geese get Special Protection Area   - Thursday, March 9, 2006


RSPB Scotland has welcomed the announcement by Scottish Natural Heritage that it is to launch a consultation on proposals to designate part of the Slamannan plateau in central Scotland as a European Special Protection Area (SPA) for bean geese.

RSPB Scotland director Stuart Housden said:

"We are delighted that this important site for the bean goose is to be considered for European Special Protection Area (SPA)designation. Though numbering only some 250 birds, the Slammanan bean goose population makes a remarkable contribution to the species' range in Europe, with their only other UK wintering site some 500km away in the Norfolk Broads. The bean goose is a striking bird which is extremely popular with bird and wildlife watchers and this move to protect their habitat from damage or disturbance is very good news for conservation.

SPAs form a European-wide network of the most important areas for birds and attract funding to help land managers look after them. They make a major contribution to the conservation of birds, biodiversity and local economies across the European Community. RSPB Scotland has a small reserve for the geese at Fannyside Loch in Lanarkshire where they regularly roost and graze."