Loch Creran NCMPA
Loch Creran is a wonderful sea loch on the west coast of Scotland to the north of Oban. It is home to a huge variety of creatures including Norway lobsters and seapens, the highly coloured dead man fingers, sponges and anemones. The existence of flame shell beds, horse mussel beds and reefs greatly enhances the biodiversity of the loch and provides shelter to many other plants and animals including seaweeds, whelks, starfish, brittlestars, crabs, sponges and sea squirts.
There is also a Special Area of Conservation in this area too, another type of Marine Protected Area.
MPA TypeNature Conservation Marine Protected Area
Nature Conservation Marine Protected Areas (NCMPAs) are designated under UK legislation (Marine Scotland Act 2010) and have been established around Scotland to contribute to the UK MPA network by protecting a range of important habitats, species and features of the seabed.
Designation date24 July 2014
Surface Area12.27 km2 (4.74 mi.2)
Perimeter38.08 km (23.66 mi.)
Flameshell beds (Limaria hians)
Flame shells are animals with a pair of shells, like a mussel or scallop, that can form dense groups on the seabed. Large groups, or beds, of flame shells are very rare. They can attract and support hundreds of other species creating a very vibrant ocean
Loch Creran contains serpulid reefs, a priority fragile biogenic reef habitat. It is the target for focused monitoring survey dives to ascertain the extent and status of the reefs. A survey weekend was organised in June 2017 (Report to be completed)Learn more about Seasearch
Did you know?…
To the shelf limits, Scotland has 61% of UK waters, of which 23% are now in existing or new ‘marine protected areas’
An area over 9 times the size of Wales is now in marine protected areas in the UK, but less than 1% is considered by MCS scientists to be well managed
Over 500,000 records on undersea habitats and species have been collected by volunteer Seasearch divers providing significant evidence for inshore ‘marine protected areas’
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