RAMSAR Wetland Information

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Wetlands are some of the most ecologically diverse habitats in Ireland and the world. Dublin Bay has internationally important wetlands, including the Ramsar site at North Bull Island, see the Ramsar webpage for information and the site for the Irish Ramsar Wetland Committee,

The Ramsar Convention is the only global environmental treaty that deals with a particular ecosystem – it protects wetlands. The Treaty was adopted in the Iranian city of Ramsar in 1971 and the Convention's member countries cover all geographic regions of the planet.  

Ireland signed the Treaty in 1985 and has 45 Ramsar sites covering 66,944 hectares – less than 1% of the total land area of the country.  North Bull Island was designated as a Ramsar site (no. 406) of 1,436 hectares in 1988.

The important wetland types at North Bull Island are:

Wetland Type:

  • Intertidal marshes; includes salt marshes, salt meadows, saltings, raised salt marshes; includes tidal brackish and freshwater marshes (H)
  • Intertidal mud, sand or salt flats (G)
  • Sand, shingle or pebble shores; includes sandbars, spits and sandy islets; includes dune systems and humid dune slacks (E)

A set of Ramsar Factsheets profiles the ‘ecosystem services’ – the benefits people obtain from ecosystems – provided by wetlands. They illustrate the great diversity of ecosystem services delivered by wetlands and their values. Click here to open the Factsheets

Image of RAMSAR wetland