Project started
1 November 2019
Project status
Coastal; Marine
North-West Europe
Contact details

Project collaborators
Henry Hakkinen portrait

Henry Hakkinen

Post-Doctoral Research Assistant

About the Project

ZSL’s Institute of Zoology has, in collaboration with the University of Cambridge, published a major report on seabird conservation in the Atlantic. The project, titled “Climate Change Vulnerability and Potential Conservation Actions: Seabirds in the North-East Atlantic”, spanned nearly three years of work, and involved the collaboration of more than 80 conservationists and policymakers across 15 European countries. The report (1) assesses seabirds’ vulnerability to climate change in the North-East Atlantic, and (2) identifies potential conservation actions that could reduce this vulnerability. Our conservation guidance collates information from the scientific literature, non-governmental organisations’ reports, conservation practitioner input and online databases into a single document and provides a reference manual to assist conservation planning. The final version of the guidance was published as an open-access book in August 2023 by the Open Book Publishers (based in Cambridge, UK):

The book focuses on the 48 seabird species that breed within the North-East Atlantic. We found over half of all species included (27 of 48 species) are already experiencing some kind of impact due to climate change, the majority of which were negative (33 of 65 recorded species impacts), and these impacts are only likely to worsen for many species. However, reducing the level of climate change, and/or targeted conservation action, could help many of these species adjust to and withstand climate change. Our book provides support, evidence, and evidence-based recommendations, to help conservation practitioners select effective conservation actions. 

Kittiwake on cliff
© Seppo Hakkinen
group of puffins
© Seppo Hakkinen


  • 48 species
    We studied 48 species in 16 countries across North-West Europe
  • >50%
    Climate change is already impacting more than half of all species studied (27/48 species)
  • >90%
    Climate change is likely to result in new (or worse) challenges to most seabirds (45/48 species)
  • Publications

    The main findings of our project have now been published as a book:

    • Häkkinen, H., Petrovan, S., Taylor, N. G., Sutherland, W. J., Pettorelli, N. (2023). Seabirds in the North-East Atlantic: Climate Change Vulnerability and Potential Conservation Actions. Open Book Publishers, 1-278.

    We have also published several academic articles:

    • Häkkinen, H., Taylor, N. G., Pettorelli, N., Sutherland, W. J., Aldara, J., Anker‐Nilssen, T., ... & Petrovan, S. (2023). Co‐developing guidance for conservation: An example for seabirds in the North‐East Atlantic in the face of climate change impacts. Conservation Science and Practice, 5(8), e12985.
    • Häkkinen, H., Petrovan, S. O., Sutherland, W. J., Dias, M. P., Ameca, E. I., Oppel, S., ... & Pettorelli, N. (2022). Linking climate change vulnerability research and evidence on conservation action effectiveness to safeguard European seabird populations. Journal of Applied Ecology, 59(5), 1178-1186.
    • Häkkinen, H., Petrovan, S. O., Sutherland, W. J., & Pettorelli, N. (2021). Terrestrial or marine species distribution model: Why not both? A case study with seabirds. Ecology and Evolution, 11(23), 16634-16646.
    Collaborators and Contributors

    We have been fortunate to work with a large number of amazing researchers, conservation practitioners and policy-makers over the course of this project. Their contributions have been invaluable to the design, content and impact our work, and we could not have done it without them. We would like to thank the following people for their contributions:

    • Jón Aldará - Faroe Islands National Museum
    • Hany Alonso - Portuguese Society for the Study of Birds
    • Orea Anderson - Joint Nature Conservation Committee, UK
    • Tycho Anker-Nilssen - Norwegian Institute for Nature Research
    • Helder Araújo - Portuguese Wildlife Society and ECOMARE, Aveiro University, Portugal
    • José Manuel Arcos - Sociedad Española de Ornitología, BirdLife
    • Christophe Aulert - Office Français de la Biodiversité
    • Bryony Baker - Joint Nature Conservation Committee, UK
    • Elmar Ballstaedt - Verein Jordsand
    • Rob van Bemmelen - Bureau Waardenburg
    • Daniel Bengtsson - BirdLife Sweden
    • Richard Berridge - Natural England
    • Julie Black - Joint Nature Conservation Committee, UK
    • Daisy Burnell - Joint Nature Conservation Committee, UK
    • Bernard Cadiou - Bretagne Vivante
    • Kees Camphuysen - Netherlands Institute for Sea Research
    • Letizia Campioni - ISPA Instituto Universitário, Lisbon
    • Rodrigo Martínez Catalán - South Iceland Nature Research Centre
    • Beth Clark - BirdLife UK
    • Nina Dehnhard - Norwegian Institute for Nature Research
    • Maria Dias - University of Lisbon
    • Leonie Enners - Verein Jordsand
    • Mats Eriksson - Projekt Lom (Birdlife Sweden)
    • Javi Franco - AZTI, Ciencia y tecnología marina y alimentaria, Bizkaia, Spain
    • Morten Frederiksen - Aarhus University
    • Bob Furness - Environmental Consultant, Scotland
    • Maria Gavrilo - Arctic and Antarctic Research Institute, St Petersburg
    • Ros Green - Liverpool University and British Trust for Ornithology
    • Gunnar Thor Hallgrimsson - University of Iceland
    • Sjúrður Hammer - Environment Agency, Faroe Islands
    • Erpur Snær Hansen - South Iceland Nature Research Centre, Birdlife Iceland
    • Sveinn Are Hansen - Norwegian Institute for Nature Research
    • Martti Hario - Finnish Game and Fisheries Research Institute, Helsinki
    • Stephen Hurling - Agricultural University of Iceland
    • Linnet Jessell - University of Exeter
    • Mark Jessop - University College Cork
    • Rebecca Jones - Natural England
    • Birgit Kleinschmidt - University of Gießen
    • Urša Koce - DOPPS-BirdLife Slovenia
    • Yann Kolbeinsson - North East Iceland Nature Center
    • Joris Laborie - Bretagne Vivante
    • Adrien Lambrechts - Office Français de la Biodiversité
    • Meelis Leivits - Estonian Environment Agency
    • Raphaël Leprince - Office Français de la Biodiversité
    • Ulrik Lötberg - BirdLife Sweden
    • Klaudyna Maniszewska - University of Glasgow
    • Mike Meadows - Joint Nature Conservation Committee, UK
    • Szabolcs Nagy - Wetlands International, Netherlands
    • Steffen Oppel - Royal Society for the Protection of Birds
    • Ana Payo-Payo - Aberdeen University
    • Kjeld Tommy Pedersen
    • Daniel Piec - Royal Society for the Protection of Birds
    • Jaime Ramos - University of Coimbra, Portugal
    • Frederic Robin - Ligue pour la Protection des Oiseaux
    • Aðalsteinn Örn Snæþórsson - North East Iceland Nature Center
    • Iben Hove Sørensen - Danish Hunters’ Association
    • Antra Stipniece - Latvian Ornithological Society
    • Sophie Thomas - Royal Society for the Protection of Birds
    • Danni Thompson - Joint Nature Conservation Committee, UK
    • Antonio Vulcano - BirdLife Europe and Central Asia
    • Eric Walter - Verein Jordsand
    • Ilka Win - Joint Nature Conservation Committee, UK
    • Ramunas Žydelis - Ornitela UAB

    This project was funded with generous support from Stichting Ave Fenix Europa