Loch Laxford SAC

Status: Designated


Site overview

This site is located on the west coast of Scotland, and is made up of inlets which were originally formed by the submergence of a glacial valley - known as a fjard.  The many reefs and islands near to the narrow loch entrance are the result of the sheltered conditions there. Here there are lots of anemones, and the snake blenny (which usually occurs in burrows in deeper water) is also common here. In the outer, more exposed parts of the site you can find sea cucumbers and heart-urchins. Beds of maerl also occur in various channels of the loch.

MPA Type

Special Area of Conservation

Special Areas of Conservation (SACs) are strictly protected sites designated under European legislation. They contribute both to the UK MPA network and set up to protect habitat types and species considered to be most in need of conservation at a European level (excluding birds).

Designation date

1 March 2001

Surface Area

12.20 km2 (4.71 mi.2)


77.96 km (48.44 mi.)

  • Shallow inlets and bays (Shallow inlets and bays)
  • Reefs

    Areas where the bedrock, stable boulders and cobbles or structures created by animals arise from the surrounding seabed. They attract and provide a home to a huge variety of plant and animal life.

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