Alde Ore Estuary

Site overview This is an important site because there are many rocky habitats here, as well as different types of gravel this may not sound exciting these types of seabed are home to many different creatures which come here to breed. For example this is an important breeding and nursery location for smelt, and a nursery area for sprat, herring, sole and dab. Other species migrate through such as salmon, sea trout and eel.
At risk: This site isn’t yet designated as a Marine Conservation Zone, but it should be. It is important that this site gets the protection it needs - we will be calling on the government to ensure that this site is included in the next round of designations. There are already other designated sites in this area which protect other parts of this unique environment. Two designated Special Areas of Conservation: Alde, Ore and Butley Estuaries and Orfordness - Shingle Street, and The Alde-Ore Estuary is a Special Protection Area (SPA). This further designation would add extra protection to the seabed here. Below the waves: Seasearch, a group of scientifically trained scuba divers, have dived this site and completed a report on what they found. Interestingly they discovered a wide mix of species normally seen on deep ship wrecks such as Christmas tree slugs and Orange anemones.

Designation Status
Last Updated
6 June 2017
MPA Type
Marine Conservation Zone
MPA Purpose
to protect nationally important marine wildlife, habitats, geology and geomorphology


52° 7' 18" North,
1° 32' 21" East

Surface Area

11.36 km2
(4.39 mi.2 )


198.97 km
(123.63 mi.)

Iconic features protected by this site