Marine Conservation Zone

An Eider Duck due for release, back to the wild, from the Berwick Swan and Wildlife Trust. One of the beneficiaries
An Eider Duck due for release, back to the wild, from the Berwick Swan and Wildlife Trust. One of the beneficiaries

Consultations opened last week about creating a Marine Conservation Zone from Berwick down the Northumberland Coast to St Mary’s Island.

It is part of UK Environment Secretary Michael Gove’s proposal to create 41 new marine conservation zones, to add to the 50 already established.

The reason behind the proposal is that the Northumberland coast is nationally important for the numbers of breeding common eider (Somateria mollissima). The area also supports regionally and nationally important numbers of common eider in the non-breeding season. This area from Coquet to Berwick-upon-Tweed holds

26.2% of the English and 5.7% of the UK non-breeding population.

Recreational activities that could be impacted if the MCZ goes ahead include powerboating, jet ski-ing and sailing.

The consultation process closes on July 20, 2018.