This report presents a summary of existing evidence, and potential research opportunities, to inform assessment of the linkage of offshore windfarm effects on black-legged kittiwakes to appropriate populations (including Special Protection Areas (SPAs)). This work has been undertaken on behalf of The Offshore Wind Strategic Monitoring Research Forum (OWSMRF). OWSMRF is an industry-led collaborative forum that aims to identify and develop research to fill critical knowledge gaps in our understanding of the impact of offshore wind development on the marine environment.
OWSMRF stakeholders identified cumulative impacts on kittiwakes as the priority need for improving understanding of offshore windfarm environmental impacts. Improving understanding of connectivity between OWF and SPA populations was identified as one of the key knowledge gaps in this area (the other two being: reducing uncertainty around estimates of collision mortality and developing a tool to facilitate cumulative effects assessment). JNCC organised an expert workshop to help understand what research might help to reduce uncertainty in this connectivity. This report provides a summary of existing, relevant, research and evidence, and research opportunities that were discussed during the workshop.