Inner Clyde Estuary SPA

Status: Designated


Site overview

This site is located to the west of Glasgow in central west Scotland. Although the Clyde Estuary is heavily industrialised along much of its length, upstream of Gourock Bay and Helensburgh there are large intertidal sand- and mud-flats. This is an important site for a range of wintering waterbirds, such as the Redshank. 

MPA Type

Special Protection Area

Special Protection Areas (SPAs) are strictly protected sites designated uner European legislation. They are established to protect rare and vulnerable birds and for regularly occurring migratory species.

Designation date

1 March 2000

Surface Area

18.25 km2 (7.05 mi.2)


114.62 km (71.22 mi.)

  • Common redshank (Tringa totanus)

    As this bird’s name suggests, its’ most distinctive features are its’ bright orange-red legs.

  • Tidal rivers, Estuaries, Mud flats, Sand flats, Lagoons (including saltwork basins)
  • Salt marshes, Salt pastures, Salt steppes

Did you know?…

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

To the shelf limits, Scotland has 61% of UK waters, of which 23% are now in existing or new ‘marine protected areas’