Protecting native species

Expected Results

Protecting native species

Expected Results

We expect to remove all invasive rats and ferrets from Rathlin Island, providing the opportunity for the internationally-important seabird colony to recover.

In the longer term, this change is expected to lead to:


Increase ‘SPA species’

Increases in the populations of the ‘SPA species’ Razorbill, Kittiwake and Guillemot


Improve assemblage

Improvements in the status of other elements of the SPA seabird assemblage, including Puffin, Fulmar, Shag, Eider, Common Gull, Herring Gull and Lesser Black-backed Gull



Recolonisation of Rathlin by seabirds that have been driven to extinction there, such as Manx shearwater and Black-headed Gull


Possible (Re)colonisation

Possible (re)colonisation by the Annex 1-listed European Storm-petrel (Hydrobates pelagicus), which is suspected but not known to have bred on Rathlin in the past


Increase Biodiversity

Increases in the populations of other species found on Rathlin Island, including the Annex I species Corncrake and Chough, as well as other terrestrial birds, small mammals, invertebrates and plants


Biosecurity Measures

Rathlin Island protected by effective biosecurity measures that are accepted and ‘owned’ by the island community


Community Impact

Community members no longer impacted by rats or ferrets, and benefiting economically both during the project (due to local employment and procurement) and in the longer term (e.g. due to increased tourism)


Increase Understanding

Increased understanding of the impacts of invasive non-native predators on fragile island ecosystems

LIFE Raft Project objectives

Protecting native species