Merenkurkku archipelago

Country/territory: Finland

IBA Criteria met: A4i, A4iii, B1i, B1ii, B1iv, B2, B3, C2, C3, C4, C5, C6 (2000)
For more information about IBA criteria please click here

Area: 223,652 ha

Most recent IBA monitoring assessment
Year of assessment Threat score (pressure) Condition score (state) Action score (response)
2010 medium very unfavourable low
For more information about IBA monitoring please click here

Site description
A large archipelago encompassing many hundreds (perhaps thousands) of islands at the boundary of the Bothnian Sea and the Bay of Bothnia. The smaller islands are treeless and rocky, the middle-sized ones hold deciduous trees, whilst the largest support mixed and coniferous forests, numerous fladas, lagoons, island lakes, and pools. The site includes extensive areas of open water, which are mainly shallow, stony and biologically productive. Fishing is extensive in many parts of the area and recreational developments are increasing.

Key biodiversity
Probably the most important area for island-breeding birds in Finland. The area supports the largest staging populations of many species in the country. An important bottleneck site for migrating Buteo lagopus (1,000-5,000 birds per season).

Raptors MOU - IBA listed under Table 3 of the Memorandum of Understanding on the Conservation of Migratory Birds of Prey in Africa and Eurasia

Recommended citation
BirdLife International (2023) Important Bird Areas factsheet: Merenkurkku archipelago. Downloaded from on 05/02/2023.