Alde Ore Estuary MCZ

Status: Dropped


Site overview

The unique and spectacular Alde-Ore Estuary is a recognised biological hotspot, having already been designated as a Site of Special Scientific Interest, a Special Area of Conservation, a Special Protection Area, a Ramsar internationally important wetland site, and parts of it are managed as nature reserves. It is home to rich and diverse communities of plants and animals, particularly birds, with tens of thousands of seabirds, waders and wildlfowl feeding and resting within the site. The habitats also provide important breeding habitats for a number of fish species, including the threatened smelt, as well as commercially important species such as herring, sole, dab and the critically endangered European eel.

Designation of this marine conservation zone in 2019 would lead to extra protection for the these important marimne habitats, ensuring that all the key biodiversity using the site is protected for posterity.

MPA Type

Marine Conservation Zone

Marine Conservation Zones (MCZs) are designated under UK legislation (Marine and Coastal Access Act 2009) and have been established around England, Wales and Northern Ireland to contribute to the UK MPA network protect a range of nationally important marine wildlife, habitats, geology and geomorphology, and can be designated anywhere in English and Welsh territorial and UK offshore waters.

Surface Area

11.36 km2 (4.39 mi.2)


198.97 km (123.63 mi.)

Coordinates (central point)

52° 7' 18" North, 1° 32' 21" East

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Seasearch dives at this site have recorded a wide mix of species normally seen on deep ship wrecks.

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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 of undersea species and habitats have been collected by volunteer Seasearch divers