Riksu coast

Year of compilation: 2000

Site description
A complex of shallow (<4 m) sea bays on the western coast of Saaremaa island, with small offshore islets, vast coastal meadows, saltmarshes and a shallow lake. The main economic activities are fishing and grazing of sheep and cattle.

Key biodiversity
Riksu coast is an important staging area for migrating Branta leucopsis.

Pressure/threats to key biodiversity
Threats are posed by unsustainable hunting, tourism, overgrowth of coastal meadows by reed Phragmites as a result of undergrazing, and intensive fishing. Research involves monitoring of migrating and wintering waterbirds.

Protected areas
National None International High1,904 ha of IBA covered by Biosphere Reserve (West Estonian Archipelago, 1,560,000 ha).

Recommended citation
BirdLife International (2023) Important Bird Areas factsheet: Riksu coast. Downloaded from on 25/03/2023.