A

Aghanloo Wood

Designations: ASSI
Council: Limavady BC
Area (ha): 91
Priority Habitats: Mixed Ashwood, Wet Woodland

Description

  • One of the largest continuous blocks of ancient woodland in Northern Ireland
  • In the northern half of the wood, conditions are dryer and hazel dominates. Ash is also present.
  • Willow dominate stream gullies & lower slopes
  • Other species include: downy birch, common cherry, sessile oak, hawthorn & blackthorn (shrub layer)
  • Flowering plants, grasses, sedges, ferns & mosses form the ground layer

Further Information on Aghanloo Wood

Altikeeragh

Designations: ASSI, NNR
Council:
Coleraine BC
Area (ha):
180
Priority Habitats:
Blanket Bog, Raised Bog

Description

  • Intact area of blanket bog within a large expanse of modified peatland
  • Blanket bog vegetation with an extensive upland raised dome
  • Well developed series of pools & hummocks
  • Breeding area for upland bird species
  • Vegetation of the intact bog surface includes Sphagnum mosses (including S.imbricatum), heather, cross-leaved heath, deergrass, hare’s-tail cotton grass & occasional crowberry

Further Information on Altikeeragh

Altmover Glen

Designations: ASSI,
Council:
Limavady BC
Area (ha):
31
Priority Habitats:
Oakwood

Description

  • The Altmover Glen was formed by the Wood Burn River
  • Both sides of the Glen are covered by mature acid Oak woodland.
  • These merge with ash/hazel woodland on lower flushed slopes, which merge with wet alder/willow woodland
  • Sessile oak dominates the mature canopy, with downy birch & rowan.
  • The understory is composed of hazel & holly

Further Information on Altmover Glen

Antrim Hills

Designations: SPA
Council:
Larne BC
Area (ha):
27,093
Priority Habitats:
Purple Moor-grass & Rush Pasture, Upland Heathland

Description

  • The Antrim Hills or Antrim Plateau is part of the basalt band that stretches across Co. Antrim
  • Rises to 360 metres & descends into the infamous nine Glens of Antrim
  • Designated SPA due to the high numbers of hen harrier & merlin

Further Information on Antrim Hills

B

Ballymaclary

Designations: NNR
Council:
Limavady BC
Priority Habitats:
Coastal Sand Dunes

Description

  • Forms part of the Magilligan SAC & ASSI
  • Contains some dune slack communities
  • Large numbers of the rare marsh helleborine
  • The rare moss: Rhytidium rugosom flourishes in the reserve

Further Information on Ballymaclary

Banagher Glen

Designations: SAC, ASSI, NNR
Council:
Limavady BC
Area (ha):
94
Priority Habitats:
Mixed Ashwood, Oakwood

Description

  • Largest intact block of semi-natural in Northern Ireland & the best example of calcifuge oak woodland
  • Long history of continuous woodland, with the current wood being >200 years.
  • Highly diverse woodland, ranging from strongly calcifuge types, characterised by sessile oak
  • & a ground flora of bryophytes & grasses, through to flushed or calcicolous types dominated by ash,
  • with a ground cover of wood anemone, bluebell, opposite leaved golden saxifrage & lesser celandine
  • ‘Natural’ wood: low number of non-native species, old trees & epiphytes
  • The largest resident butterfly in NI, the silver-washed fritillary butterfly, breeds in the woodland.

Further Information on Banagher Glen

Bann Estuary

Designations: SAC, ASSI
Council:
Coleraine BC
Area (ha):
348
Priority Habitats:
Coastal & Floodplain Grazing Marsh, Coastal Saltmarsh, Coastal Sand Dunes, Mudflats

Description

  • Complex mosaic of habitat types, including a series of sand dune systems
  • Various habitat types are associated with the dune systems, such as embryo dune, white dune & grey dune.
  • Wetland & saltmarsh increase the biodiversity
  • Used by large numbers of passage & wintering waders and wildfowl
  • Contains the Grangemore dune system

Further Information on Bann Estuary

Binevenagh

Designations: SAC, ASSI, NNR
Council:
Limavady BC
Area (ha):
91
Priority Habitats:
Calcareous Grassland

Description

  • Binevenagh is part of the northern most outcropping of the Antrim Plateau
  • It is an ASSI due to its geological & geomorphological features, grasslands,
  • cliff vegetation, bryophytes, fungi & rare plants
  • The cliffs at Binevenagh, uniquely, support arctic-alpine plants & bryophytes.The grasslands below the cliffs are nationally important for waxcap (Hygrocybe) fungi.

Further Information on Binevenagh

Black Burn

Designations: ASSI
Council:
Larne BC
Area (ha):
20
Priority Habitats:
Mixed Ashwood

Description

  • Only known extensive, active cave system developed in the Cretaceous age Ulster White Limestone in Northern Ireland
  • First cave record of the Ground Beetle Trechus fulvus from Northern Ireland

Further Information on Black Burn

Breen Wood

Designations: SAC, NNR, ASSI
Council:
Moyle DC
Area (ha):
36
Priority Habitats:
Oakwood, Wet Woodland

Description

  • Semi-natural, acid woodland
  • One of the last fragments of extensive woodlands in north-east Antrim
  • Mature oak trees (Q.petraea and Q.pendunculate) form canopy with birch on higher ridges
  • Rowan, hawthorn, holly & hazel form an understory
  • Great wood-rush, bilberry, bluebells on drier, upper slopes. Alder & willow grow in damper areas

Further Information on Breen Wood

C

Caldanagh Bog

Designations: ASSI
Council:
Ballymoney BC
Area (ha):
36
Priority Habitats:
Raised Bog

Description

  • A lowland raised bog that forms part of the Main Valley Bogs SAC series
  • Classic domed profile & an important area of intact lagg along the north-eastern edge of the bog.
  • Past cutting has removed most laggs in Northern Ireland.
  • Nationally rare Sphagnum pulchrum is abundant in the hollows, in addition to S.imbricatum & S.fuscum

Further Information on Caldanagh Bog

Carn/Glenshane Pass

Designations: SAC,ASSI
Council:
Coleraine BC, Limavady BC
Area (ha):
1939
Priority Habitats:
Blanket Bog

Description

  • Large area of blanket bog at the northern end of the Sperrin Mountains
  • Diverse peatland: cut-over, eroded, drained with intact blanket bog on saddles & gentler slopes
  • Vegetation includes Sphagum mosses (S.imbricatum & S.fuscum), heather, cross-leaved heath & various sedges e.g. deergrass & hare’s-tail cottongrass

Further Information on Carn/Glenshane Pass

Carrick-a-rede

Designations: ASSI
Council:
Moyle DC
Area (ha):
18
Priority Habitats:
Littoral & Sublittoral Chalk

Description

  • Carrick-a-rede is an island off the North Antrim Coast
  • The island & adjoining mainland represent a section through a volcano
  • which exploded during the Tertiary period (60 million years ago)
  • It is the only example of a raised sea cave in the Ulster White Limestone
  • The island is important for breeding seabirds

Further Information on Carrick-a-rede

Cleggan Valley

Designations: ASSI
Council:
Ballymena BC
Area (ha):
35
Priority Habitats:
Mixed Ashwood

Description

  • Wooded river valley
  • Ash/hazel woodland, semi-natural species rich grassland & base-rich flushes

Further Information on Cleggan Valley

Coolnasillagh

Designations: ASSI
Council:
Coleraine BC
Area (ha):
17
Priority Habitats:
Purple Moor-grass & Rush Pasture

Description

  • Coolnasillagh is within the Coolnasillagh River Valley on the eastern edge of the Northern Sperrins
  • Designated an ASSI for the Priority Habitat: Purple Moor-grass & Rush Pastures

Further Information on Coolnasillagh

Craigagh Wood

Designations: NT
Council:
Moyle DC
Area (ha):
37
Priority Habitats:
Oakwood

Description

  • Broadleaved woodland with a diverse range of trees.
  • Oaks are the most common, followed by beech, ash, sycamore, hazel, wych elm & sweet chestnut
  • Several conifers are also present, such as Sitka spruce, larch & Scots pine.
  • Rare plants and rich moss, liverwort, fern & lichen flora.

Further Information on Craigagh Wood

Cranny Falls

Designations: LNR
Council:
Larne BC
Priority Habitats:
Wet Woodland

Description

  • Located above Carnlough
  • Area of species rich limestone grassland & wet woodland

Further Information on Cranny Falls

Creighton’s Wood

Designations: UWT
Council:
Coleraine BC
Area (ha):
13
Priority Habitats:
Oakwood

Description

  • Hazel & oak woodland with associated bog & wetland habitats
  • Supports rare plants, butterflies & breeding birds

Further Information on Creighton’s Wood

Cushleake

Designations: UWT
Council:
Coleraine BC
Area (ha):
1200 ha
Priority Habitats:
Blanket Bog

Description

  • Extensive area of blanket bog
  • Supports some rare upland species of butterflies, birds & plants

D

Dunloy Bog

Designations: ASSI
Council:
Ballymoney BC
Area (ha):
108
Priority Habitats:
Raised Bog

Description

  • Dunloy Bog contains one of largest areas of undamaged lowland raised bog in Northern Ireland
  • Forms part of the Main Valley Bogs SAC series
  • The bog includes a large, intact dome, with a hummock/ hollow complex.
  • Sphagnum mosses (S. imbricatum and S.fuscum) occur in the hummocks
  • This bog includes the most extensive, least disturbed bog-to-lagg transition in NI

Further Information on Dunloy Bog

E

ECOS Nature Park

Designations: UWT
Council:
Ballymena BC
Area (ha):
220 (of parkland)
Priority Habitats:
Parkland, Reedbeds

Description

  • An ‘oasis of wildlife’ close to Ballymena City Centre
  • Includes the Millennium Environmental Centre
  • Includes a range of habitats, including a freshwater lake, rivers, new woodland and wet & dry grassland
  • Birds include linnet
  • Supports an array of butterfly species, grasshopper warbler & teal

Further Information on ECOS Nature Park

F

Feystown

Designations: ASSI, UWT
Council:
Larne BC
Area (ha):
0.4
Priority Habitats:
Raised Bog

Description

  • Feystown ASSI is a small area of semi-natural grassland, situated in the Glens of Antrim
  • It is species-rich & is the main site for the rare Wood Cranesbill

Further Information on Feystown

Frosses Bog

Designations: ASSI
Council:
Ballymena BC
Area (ha):
43
Priority Habitats:
Raised Bog

Description

  • Compact, relatively undisturbed lowland raised bog, which is part of the Main Valley Bog SAC series
  • The intact bog shows the typical dome profile, with hummocks, lawn complexes & shallow pools
  • It supports Sphagnum mosses, including the nationally rare S.pulchrum
  • In contrast to Caldanagh Bog, no lagg remains due to cutting around the margins
  • Cranberry is present in abundance & the presence of crowberry is unusual for a lowland raised bog

Further Information on Frosses Bog

G

Garron Plateau

Designations: SAC, ASSI, Ramsar
Council:
Ballymena BC, Larne BC, Moyle DC
Area (ha):
4650
Priority Habitats:
Blanket Bog, Maerl Beds

Description

  • Largest and one of the last untouched areas of intact blanket bog in Northern Ireland
  • Site occurs over basalt rocks
  • Extensive areas with hummock and lawn, saddle mires, well developed pool complexes and areas of eroding peat (NIEA)
  • Natural dystrophic lakes and ponds, oligotrophic lakes, raised bog with flushed areas, drier and thinner blanket peat, wet heath and acid grassland
  • Transition mires and quaking bogs (Annex I habitats)
  • Bog vegetation characterised by Sphagnum mosses (S.austinii and S.fuscum)
  • On deeper waterlogged peat, vegetation is characterised by Cross-leaved heath, Bog Asphodel and Cotton-grass.
  • On more freely draining slopes heather, crowberry & hare’s tail cotton-grass dominate
  • Well developed flushed characterised by black bog rush, Carex spp. (sedges) & brown mosses e.g.

Drepanocladus spp & Calliergon spp.

Where peats are thinner, localised flushing by mineral-enriched water results in alkaline fen vegetation. Characteristic vegetation includes herbs such as: devil’s bit scabious, eyebright, marsh lousewort, common butterwort, lesser clubmoss; sedges such as dioecious sedge, flea sedge, tawny sedge, yellow-sedge & various bryophytes (JNCC)

Further Information on Garron Plateau

Garry Bog

Designations: SAC, ASSI, NNR, Ramsar
Council:
Ballymoney BC
Area (ha):
155
Priority Habitats:
Raised Bog

Description

  • Largest are of lowland active raised bog in Northern Ireland & represents one of the best examples of this habitat type in UK
  • Internationally important for peat stratigraphy, displaying succession from clay to lake muds, through reed swamp & wood peat to raised bog
  • Raised bog covers most of the site but it is surrounded by cut-over bog with poor fen
  • Well-developed pool complex & partially intact lagg
  • Sphagnum moss species are characteristic, including the rare S.pulchrum

Further Information on Garry Bog

Giant’s Causeway & Dunseverick

Designations: WHS, ASSI, NNR
Council: Moyle DC
Area (ha): 226
Priority Habitats: Coastal Maritime Cliff & Slope, Coastal Saltmarsh, Coastal Vegetated Shingle

Description

  • World renowed geological site, famous for its basalt columns & cliffs
  • which represent volcanic activity in the area from 50-60 million years ago (Tertiary)
  • International status was recognised by granting of WHS status for its geological
  • & landscape value. It is one of only three WHS in the UK
  • Forms part of the North Antrim Coast SAC
  • Important site for feeding, breeding & wintering birds

Further Information on Giant’s Causeway & Dunseverick

Glenariff Glen

Designations: ASSI, NNR
Council:
Moyle DC
Area (ha):
66
Priority Habitats:
Calcareous Grassland, Mixed Ashwood

Description

  • Large area of undisturbed ash/hazel woodland in Co.Antrim
  • Streams, many waterfalls, scree slopes & cliffs
  • Mosses, liverworts and ferns thrive in the shady, damp conditions

Further Information on Glenariff Glen

Glenarm Wood

Designations: ASSI
Council:
Larne BC
Area (ha):
139
Priority Habitats:
Mixed Ashwood, Oakwood, Purple Moor Grass & Rush Pasture

Description

  • Series of woodlands along the Glenarm river valley & its tributaries.
    Together these form the largest area of remaining semi-natural woodland in Co. Antrim
  • The woodland is variable, ranging from base-rich & flushed to acidic.
    As a result it supports a diverse habitat types & is one of the richest woodlands for plants in Northern Ireland.

Further Information on Glenarm Wood

Glenoe Ashwood

Designations: NT
Council:
Larne BC
Priority Habitats:
Mixed Ashwood

Description

  • Semi-natural woodland, with ash as the dominant species, with beech, sycamore & occasional horse chestnut
  • Mixed understory of hazel, blackthorn, hawthorn, willow & occasionally holly & spindle
  • Herb layer dominated by wood anemone & other flowering plants

Further Information on Glenoe Ashwood

Glen Burn

Designations: ASSI
Council:
Ballymena BC
Area (ha):
9
Priority Habitats:
Mixed Ashwood

Description

  • Small narrow valley, formed by the Glen Burn river
  • Ash/Hazel woodland on the steep valley side
  • Wide variety of woodland flowers & rare plant species

Further Information on Glen Burn

Gortnagory

Designations: ASSI
Council:
Larne BC
Area (ha):
4

Description

  • On the eastern side of Garron Plateau
  • Upland grassland site
  • Only high altitude site for Irish Lady’s Tresses orchid in Northern Ireland

Further Information on Gortnagory

L

Larne Lough

Designations: SPA,ASSI, Ramsar, RSPB reserve
Council:
Ballymena BC
Area (ha):
396
Priority Habitats:
Reedbeds,Coastal Saltmarsh:Mudflats, Seagrass Beds, Sheltered Muddy Gravels, Tidal Rapids

Description

  • Inter-tidal sea Lough with the main freshwater supply from Glynn & Larne rivers
  • Mostly filled with sediment
  • Importance as a breeding & feeding area for tern species.
  • Wintering site for the Canada/ Ireland population of light-bellied brent geese (internationally important numbers)
  • In upper reaches of the estuary at Ballycarry, there is an area of saltmarsh

Further Information on Larne Lough

Lemnalary

Designations: ASSI
Council:
Larne BC
Area (ha):
0.2

Description

  • Lemnalary ASSI is a small area of agricultural grassland, approximately 1.5km North of Carnlough
  • It is the most important site for the Great Burnet in Northern Ireland

Further Information on Lemnalary

Lough Foyle

Designations: SPA, ASSI, RamsarCouncil: Limavady BC
Area (ha):
2005
Priority Habitats:
Coastal & Floodplain Grazing Marsh, Coastal Saltmarsh, Coastal Mudflats, Sheltered Muddy Gravels,Sublittoral Sands & Gravels, Seagrass Beds, Saline Lagoons, Tidal Rapids

Description

  • Large shallow sea lough with estuaries of the rivers Foyle, Faughan & Roe
  • Intertidal mudflats & sandflats with extensive seagrass beds, saltmarsh, estuaries & associated brackish ditches
  • Supports large populations of waders & other bird species
  • Supports internationally important numbers of the Canada/ Ireland light-bellied brent geese, whooper swan, wigeon & bar-tailed godwit
  • Notable fish species have been recorded: Smelt, Allis Shad, Twaite Shad & Altantic Salmon

Further Information on Lough Foyle

Lough Beg

Designations: ASSI
Council:
Antrim BC, Ballymena BC, Magherafelt DC
Area (ha):
1125
Priority Habitats:
Purple Moor Grass & Rush Pastures

Description

  • Lough Beg is a shallow lough, of 1-2metres that lies to the north of Lough Neagh
  • Lough Beg & its associated aquatic vegetation form part of the internationally important
  • Lough Neagh Ramsar site for wintering waterfowl: pochard, teal, shoveler & whooper swan
  • Passage site for waders such as the black-tailed godwit
  • Internationally important populations of wintering wildfowl
  • The western shore includes large areas of unimproved meadows, containing many rare or local plants such as Irish lady’s tresses orchid
  • The nature reserve (includes Church Island) comprises 300 acres (121 ha) of this habitat

Further Information on Lough Beg

Lough Neagh & Lough Beg

Designations: SPA, Ramsar
Council:
Antrim BC, Ballymena BC, Magherafelt DC
Area (ha):
40836
Priority Habitats:
Eutrophic Standing Water, Purple Moor Grass & Rush Pastures

Description

  • Lough Neagh is the largest freshwater lake in the UK & is situated in the centre of Northern Ireland.
  • The site contains Lough Beg to the north (see above)
  • The loughs support a diverse assemblage of waterbirds throughout the year

Further Information

M

Magilligan

Designations: SAC, ASSICouncil: Coleraine BC, Limavady BC
Area (ha):
1069
Priority Habitats:
Coastal Sand Dunes, Sublittoral Sands & Gravels

Description

  • Magilligan is one of the largest calcareous dune systems in the UK & one of the best examples of a sand dune system in NI
  • Well-developed & largely undisturbed system of ridges & slacks which contain the majority of dune slack vegetation in NI
  • Fixed dune vegetation with red fescue & lady’s bedstraw dominates
  • Supports a wide range of plant & animal communities

Further Information on Magilligan

Magilligan Point

Designations: NNR
Council:
Limavady BC

Description

  • The tip of Magilligan sand dune system
  • Offers excellent views of seabirds, migrating waders & wildfowl
  • Forms part of the Magilligan SAC & ASSI (above)

Further Information on Magilligan Point

Main Valley Bogs

Designations: SAC
Council:
Ballymoney BC & Ballymena BC
Area (ha):
186
Priority Habitats:
Raised Bog

Description

  • Includes three active raised bogs: Caldanagh Bog, Frosses Bog & Dunloy Bog
  • The three bogs occur as part of a complex along the valley of the River Main in the north-east of Northern Ireland
  • Vegetation includes the rare Sphagnum pulchrum

Further Information on Main Valley Bogs

N

North Antrim Coast

Designations: SAC
Council:
Moyle DC
Area (ha):
315
Priority Habitats:
Raised Bog

Description

Further Information on North Antrim Coast

P

Portmuck

Designations: ASSI
Council:
Larne BC
Area (ha):
20
Priority Habitats:
Coastal Saltmarsh, Calcareous Grassland

Description

  • Portmuck is the is the only site of the mineral sodalite in Ireland & is the best example
  • of the Cretaceous Hibernian formation in Northern Ireland
  • The tombolo linking the Isle of Muck to the mainland is the only such feature on the open coast of Northern Ireland
  • Important for breeding birds

Further Information on Portmuck

Portstewart Strand & Dunes

Designations: NT
Council:
Coleraine BC
Area (ha):
99
Priority Habitats:
Coastal Sand Dunes

Description

  • At the western end of Portstewart Strand lies Barmouth (estuarine site & LNR).
  • Sandy beach & sand dunes
  • Attracts large numbers of migrant & wintering waterfowl & waders
  • (See Bann Estuary)

Further Information on Portstewart Strand & Dunes

R

Ramore Head & The Skerries

Designations: ASSI
Council:
Coleraine BC
Area (ha):
23
Priority Habitats:
Seagrass Beds

Description

  • Small chain of islands formed from cooled volcanic lava
  • Locally important breeding populations of birds

Further Information on Ramore Head & The Skerries

Rathlin Island

Designations: SAC, SPA
Council:
Moyle DC
Area (ha):
3345
Priority Habitats:
Lowland Heathland

Description

  • Large, only inhabitated island in Northern Ireland, which lies 4km from the North Antrim Coast
  • Designated an SPA by supporting nationally important numbers of the peregrine falcon & chough (both Annex I species).
  • Basalt & chalk cliffs and sea-stacks on the north & west shores are important for seabirds
  • Supports internationally important breeding numbers of migratory species: razorbill, guillemot & kittiwake
  • Designated an SAC due to the special plants of the maritime grassland & lowland heath communities
  • One of the best examples of reefs in Northern Ireland. Supports sponges, algae & hydroids
  • Includes submerged & partially submerged caves & overhangs in limestone & basalt in a strong tidal stream. This site is used by cave-breeding Grey seals.

Further Information on Rathlin Island

Rathlin Island Coast

Designations: ASSI
Council: Moyle DC
Area (ha): 257
Priority Habitats: Coastal Vegetated Shingle, Coastal Maritime Cliff & Slope

Description

  • The rocky coastline of Rathlin Island
  • Wide range of habitas: vertical sea cliffs, sea stacks, maritime grassland, saltmarsh areas, shores of boulder & shingle
  • Northern Ireland’s largest population of puffin breed among grassy slopes of the cliff ledges
  • The cliffs are important for breeding seabirds such as razorbill, guillemot & kittiwake

Further Information on Rathlin Island Coast

Rathlin Island – Ballycarry

Designations: ASSI
Council:
Moyle DC
Area (ha):
43
Priority Habitats:
Lowland Heathland

Description

  • Ballycarry occupies a relatively flat plateau to the north-east of Rathlin Island
  • It is an ASSI due to its heath & wetland vegetation
  • Much of the area of dominated by a dwarf-heath community (e.g. Heather, Bell Heather and Western Gorse); a restricted vegetation type in the British Isles.

Further Information on Rathlin Island – Ballycarry

Rathlin Island – Ballyconagan

Designations: NT
Council:
Moyle DC
Area (ha):
64
Priority Habitats:
Lowland Heathland

Description

  • Lowland heath and grassland habitats
  • National Trust-owned Waymarked Trails

Rathlin Island – Ballygill North

Designations: ASSI
Council:
Moyle DC
Area (ha):
78
Priority Habitats:
Lowland Heathland

Description

  • An area of lowland heathland at the north-western side of Rathlin Island
  • Complex pattern of heath and associated habitats that form a mosaic of vegetation
  • Vegetation on the plateau includes Heather, Bell Heather & Western Gorse
  • Many of the slopes are flushed by mineral rich waters & dominated by various sedges

Further Information on Rathlin Island – Ballygill North

Rathlin Island – Kebble

Designations: NNR
Council:
Moyle DC

Description

  • The Kebble NNR is located at the western end of Rathlin Island, by the west lighthouse
  • Sheer cliffs rise more than 100 metres and the coastline includes raised beaches & rock stacks
  • The reserve also includes areas of grassland, heather and wetland.
  • Supports internationally important numbers of bird species, such as the razorbill, guillemot & kittiwake

Further Information on Rathlin Island – Kebble

River Roe & Tributaries

Designations: SAC, ASSI
Council:
Limavady BC
Area (ha):
408

Description

  • Includes the River Roe & parts of the Curly River, Gelvin River, Altahullion Burn, Owenbeg River & Owenrigh River
  • Important for its Atlantic Salmon & otter populations
  • Otter fish species include minnow, sea lamprey & brown trout

Further Information on River Roe & Tributaries

Roe Estuary

Designations: NNR
Council:
Limavady BC
Priority Habitats:
Coastal Saltmarsh, Mudflats, Seagrass Beds

Description

  • Forms part of the Lough Foyle tidal system
  • Provides cover for birds including lapwing, curlew & various waders

Further Information on Roe Estuary

Runkerry

Designations: ASSI
Council:
Coleraine BC, Moyle DC
Area (ha):
24
Priority Habitats:
Coastal Sand Dunes

Description

  • Beach system of international importance
  • The dunes have seaside centaury, confined to the sand dunes of the north coast in Northern Ireland

Further Information on Runkerry

S

Scawt Hill

Designations: ASSI
Council:
Larne BC
Area (ha):
8

Description

  • Important in terms of Earth Science: crag, scree & landslip features
  • Calcicolous (grows in lime soil) & calcifugous (grows in acid soil) communities close together
  • Supports breeding peregrine falcon

Further Information on Scawt Hill

Sheep Island

Designations: SPA, ASSI
Council:
Moyle DC
Area (ha):
3.5
Priority Habitats:

Description

  • Small island located 0.5km off the North Antrim Coast
  • Supports nationally important numbers of breeding northern European sub-species of cormorant
  • Supports other breeding seabirds: razorbill, guillemot, kittiwake, shag, fulmar & black guillemot

Further Information on Sheep Island

Straidkilly Wood

Designations: ASSI, NNR, UWT
Council:
Larne BC
Area (ha):
16
Priority Habitats:
Mixed Ashwood

Description

  • One of the largest & least disturbed areas of base-rich woodlands in north-east Antrim, situated between Glenarm & Carnlough
  • Hazel woodland, occasional rowan & hawthorn
  • Ash, goat willow & downy birch are also present
  • Rich ground flora of bluebells, wild garlic, opposite-leaved golden saxifrage, wood anemone & wood vetch

Further Information on Straidkilly Wood

Swan Island

Designations: SPA, NNR, RSPB
Council:
Larne BC
Area (ha):
0.1

Description

  • Small island located within Larne Lough
  • Composed of shingle, gravel & stones overlain by a thin layer of soil
  • Supports nationally important breeding populations of roseate & common tern

Further Information on Swan Island

T

Tievebulliagh

Designations: ASSI
Council:
Moyle DC
Area (ha):
84

Description

  • Important in terms of Earth Science: a range of rare minerals recorded
  • Upland vegetation communities: dry heath, shallow peat & flushed acid grassland
  • Supports breeding peregrine falcon

Further Information on Tievebulliagh

Tow River Wood

Designations: ASSI
Council:
Moyle
Area (ha):
12
Priority Habitats:
Oakwood, Wet Woodland

Description

  • Tow River Wood is an excellent example of a base-rich woodland in Antrim
  • The woodland lies within the secluded valley of the Tow River
  • Transition from marshland and wet woodland on the lower half to mature, dry woodland on upper slopes
  • Oak canopy, with Hazel & occasional Ash & Birch
  • Wide range of woodland plant communities

Further Information on Tow River Wood

U

Umbra

Designations: UWT
Council:
Limavady BC
Area (ha):
36
Priority Habitats:
Coastal Sand Dunes

Description

Undisturbed sand dune complex that forms part of the eastern end of Magilligan sand dune system

  • Summer displays of flowering plants in the meadowsn & sand dunes, which support a diverse range of insects
  • Supports the rare marsh helleborine

Further Information on Umbra

W

White Park Bay

Designations: ASSI, NT
Council:
Moyle DC
Area (ha):
88
Priority Habitats:
Coastal Sand Dunes, Maritime Cliff & Slope, Littoral & Sublittoral Chalk

Description

  • Beautiful coastal site with chalk cliffs & a sand dune system
  • Mosaic of several grassland types contribute to the richness of the flora & fauna
  • Notable for its diverse plant and animal communities. Common Lizard Lacerta vivipara & Pygmy Shrew Sorex minutus have been recorded.
  • Numerous birds use the cliffs for nesting sites.

Further Information on White Park Bay

White Rocks

Designations: ASSI
Council:
Coleraine BC
Area (ha):
17
Priority Habitats:
Littoral & Sublittoral Chalk

Description

  • Cliffs are the best examples of coastal landforms developed in the Ulster White Limestone
  • Includes cliff, caves, arches, shore platforms & sea stacks

Further Information on White Rocks