Ballyquintin Point ASSI

Protected area type: Areas of Special Scientific Interest
Feature type: 
  • Habitat
  • Species
  • Earth Science
  • Down
Council: Ards and North Down
Guidance and literature: Ballyquintin Point ASSI

Ballyquintin Point exhibits an exceptionally well developed raised cobble beach of the cuspate foreland type, with associated ridges and bars, together with a range of contemporary coastal landforms. Although major raised beach complexes are present elsewhere in Northern Ireland, none exhibit such an extensive area and thickness of cobble grade material.

The vegetation at Ballyquintin Point illustrates a natural transition from maritime to terrestrial communities. Saltmarsh is developed locally, nestled amongst the mosaic of rocky outcrops and shingle bars, and is more extensively formed over the tidally inundated pasture at the northern end of the site. Strandline communities are extensively developed along its shore. Maritime grassland occurs over the tops of rocky outcrops, with species-rich dry grassland around its coastal rim. The interior is dominated by scrub.

Rare species include slender spike-rush and the rare pill woodlouse which occurs here at its most northerly site in Ireland.

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