A pair of Coryphella gracilis nudibranchs grazing on Eudendrium spp. Hydroids. Caol Scotnish, Loch Sween. Photographer: Laura Clark (SNH). © SNH. All rights reserved. Please contact CMEU for details - snhmarinephotos@nature.scot

Loch Sween NCMPA

Loch Sween Nature Conservation MPA has a complex shape with many narrow arms, which supports a diversity of seabed habitats.

Loch Sween NCMPA was designated to protect rich maerl beds and burrowed mud, which supports the volcano worm. It also encompasses the high energy tide-swept waters at the mouth of Loch Sween and around the McCormaig Isles where the sediments are much coarser.

This NCMPA also safeguards one of Scotland’s most important populations of native oyster.

Conservation objectives

Conserve the protected features of the Loch Sween NCMPA

Protected features


  • burrowed mud
  • maerl beds
  • native oysters
  • sublittoral mud and mixed sediment communities


Loch Sween Nature Conservation Marine Protected Area Order 2014

Loch Sween Marine Protected Area: Site summary - The many arms and sea loch habitats of Loch Sween

Loch Sween MPA boundary map

Loch Sween MPA: Data confidence assessment

Loch Sween MPA: Assessment against the MPA Selection Guidelines

Loch Sween MPA: Management options


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