The Canyons MCZ
This site is located in the far south-west corner of the UK continental shelf and has a unique cold water coral reef feature within it, the only known reef of this type in England. The site is at the edge of the shelf, which drops away steeply and there are two large canyons within the site. Seabirds and cetaceans have often been seen here.
MPA TypeMarine 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 Area660.50 km2 (255.02 mi.2)
Perimeter110.19 km (68.47 mi.)
Cold-water coral reefs
Coral reefs aren’t confined to the tropics – we have a reef-forming coral of our own here in UK waters. They can form huge reefs - home to many animals. Unlike tropical corals they can thrive in dark, deep, cold water.
The deep sea begins at the edge of the continental shelf (the area of seabed around the UK which is shallower than the open ocean), which is usually at depths over 200m.
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 170 parliamentarians from across the political spectrum signed up to our Marine Charter calling for a network of ‘marine protected areas’ in UK Seas
To the shelf limits, Scotland has 61% of UK waters, of which 23% are now in existing or new ‘marine protected areas’
The future of fisheries is being decided
The UK government has opened a public consultation asking how we think they should manage our fisheries after Brexit through a new Fisheries Bill.Act now!