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IPA Factsheet - Snowdon / Eryi
Site code
CountryUnited Kingdom
Administrative regionWales
Central co-ordinates53o 4' N / 4o 4' W map
Altitude100 - 1085

 Site Description At 1085 meters, the summit of Eryri (Snowdon) is the highest mountain in England and Wales. To the north and west of this high-point, the other 13 summits over 3000 ft form a stunning upland landscape of plateau, cliffs, and screes, bisected by wooded river valleys and lakes. Heaths, alpine cliff and scree habitats predominate, and a unique suite of rare arctic alpine higher and lower plants are present as well as a range of threatened birds and invertebrates. The site has long been protected by its status as a National Park (a planning authority with its own biodiversity remit), and the more recent designations of SAC and SSSI further ensure that any management undertaken is beneficial to biodiversity.

 Botanical Significance Eryri (Snowdon) qualifies soundly as an IPA on all three criteria. For Criterion A there are large populations of Luronium natans (Floating Water-plantain) and the endemic Eyebrights Euphrasia cambrica and E. rivularis. The exceptionally rich flora (Criterion B) is shown by hot-spots of threatened vascular species for both inland rock and montane habitats, and also for montane lichen habitats. Finally, Eryriís status as an outstanding example of a habitat type of global or European plant importance comes from its designation as a SAC for its calcareous rocky slopes, alpine and boreal grasslands, montane to snow level scree, tall herb fringe communities and its oligotrophic to mesotrophic lakes.

 General Habitat Description Calcareous rocky slopes with chasmophytic vegetation; Drepanocladus vernicosus (Hamatocaulis), Hydrophilous tall herb fringe communities of plains and of the montane to alpine levels; Oligotrophic to mesotrophic standing waters with vegetation of the Littorelletea uniflorae and/or of the IsoŽto-Nanojuncetea; Siliceous alpine and boreal grasslands; Siliceous rocky slopes with chasmophytic vegetation; Siliceous scree of the montane to snow levels (Androsacetalia alpinae and Galeopsietalia ladani)

Land use

Land use% CoverLevel
agriculture (animals)Major
extraction (minerals)Minor

Threatened Species

Species NameIPA Assess.Species Assess.AbundanceData qualityCriteria
Euphrasia cambrica Pugsley20072007raregoodA(iii)
Euphrasia rivularis20072007raregoodA(iii)
Luronium natans (L.) Raf.20072007raregoodA(ii)
Trichomanes speciosum Willd.20122012rareunknownA(i), A(ii)

Botanical Richness

EUNIS level 2 code & nameIPA Assess.Habitat Assess.% of indicator speciesNo. SpeciesNational BiotopeData qualityCriteria
C1 Surface standing waters2007200700unknownB
D1 Raised & blanket bogs2007200700mediumB
H2 Screes2007200700mediumB
H3 Inland cliffs, rock pavements & outcrops2007200700mediumB

Threatened Habitats

IPA Habitat code & nameIPA Assess.Habitat Assess.AreaData qualityCriteria
6430 Hydrophilous tall herb fringe communities of plains and of the montane to alpine levels200720070unknownCii
8220 Siliceous rocky slopes with chasmophytic vegetation200720070unknownCii
6150 Siliceous alpine and boreal grasslands200720070mediumCii
8110 Siliceous scree of the montane to snow levels (Androsacetalia alpinae and Galeopsetalia ladani)200720070mediumCii
8210 Calcareous rocky slopes with chasmophytic vegetation201220120unknownCii
3260 Water courses of plain to montane levels with the Ranunculion fluitantis and Callitricho-Batrachion vegetation201220120unknownCii
3130 Oligotrophic to mesotrophic standing waters witth vegetation of the Littorelletea uniflorae and/or Isoeto-Nanjuncet200720070unknownCii


DesignationProtected Area NameRelationship with IPAOverlap with IPA
National ParkSnowdonia National Parkprotected area contains IPA213157
Site of Special Scientific InterestEryri/ Snowdoniaprotected area overlaps with IPA20340
Special Area of ConservationEryri/ Snowdoniaprotected area contained by IPA19737
National Nature ReserveCwm Idwalprotected area contained by IPA398
Local Nature ReserveCoed Dinorwigprotected area contained by IPA48
Local Nature ReserveDudley Quarryprotected area contained by IPA16
National ParkSnowdonia National Parkprotected area overlaps with IPA34803


TypeDescriptionYear startedYear finishes
Protected Area Management PlanEryri/Snowdon SSSI2004
Habitat Action Plan (HAP)Montane Heath & Acid Grassland (LBAP)1997
Species Action Plan (SAP)Luronium natans (UK BAP)19892007
Protected Area Management PlanUpland Framework2007
Protected Area Management PlanSSSI Management Statements
Protected Area Management PlanNNR Management Plans
Species Management PlanLuronium natans (UK BAP)2008
Species Management PlanEuphrasia cambrica (UK BAP) 2008
Species Management PlanEuphrasia rivularis (UK BAP) 2008
Species Management PlanDwarf Shrub Heath (LBAP)
Habitat Action Plan (HAP)Acidic Scree (LBAP)
Habitat Action Plan (HAP)Mesotrophic (& Oligotrophic) Lakes (LBAP
Habitat Action Plan (HAP)Mines & Mine Waste (LBAP)
Habitat Action Plan (HAP)Montane Heath & Acid Grassland (LBAP
Habitat Action Plan (HAP)Raised Bogs (LBAP)
Habitat Action Plan (HAP)Tall Herb and Ledge Communities (LBAP)
Habitat Action Plan (HAP)Blanket Bog (UK BAP)2008
Habitat Action Plan (HAP)Purple moor grass and rush pastures (UK BAP) 2008


agricultural intensification/expansion (grazing)medium
burning of vegetationmedium
climate change/ sea level riselow
consequences of invasive species (plant)high
development (recreation/tourism)low
development (infrastructure/transport)low
abandonment/reduction of land managementhigh

 Conservation Issues Overgrazing and diffuse eutrophication are regarded as the prime threats to the IPA. Grazing pressures have been reduced at some key sites within the IPA (e.g. Cwm Idwal) and it is hoped that the result of this will encourage further reductions. Small-scale hydroelectricity schemes are a major development threat and are dealt with by the National Park Authority. Invasion of Rhododendron ponticum is a major concern and its control is being dealt with through a partnership approach between the National Park Authority and the National Trust.

Contact Information

ContactContact Type
Trevor DinesSite report compiler