This west coast sea loch MPA for flame shell beds builds on the Loch Creran SAC designated for reefs, both bedrock reefs and biogenic reefs of horse mussel and serpulid worms.
This sheltered sea loch was carved from rock by glaciers during the last Ice Age and consists of two deep basins separated by narrow, shallow sills. The tide entering and leaving the loch creates contrasting conditions, deep dark stillness at the bottom of the basins and rushing tides over the sills at Eriska Narrows and Creaggan Narrows. These two areas of tidal flow supply the necessary food and aeration for two flame shell beds. The largest is 18 hectares and lies just east of Eriska Narrows and the smaller is about 0.5 ha and is to the west of Creagan Narrows.
The current conservation objective is to conserve the protected features of this MPA.
More detail on the designation is available from the SNH website.
The final Business and Regulatory Impact Assessment for this MPA is available to view.