The limestones of Carlingford Lough were deposited in a shallow sea basin during the Carboniferous period 339 million years ago. They contain numerous fossils, such as brachiopods and solitary corals. Moraines and deposited sediments provide evidence of the movement of ice sheets and glaciers.
The site supports a range of unusual and rich littoral communities, including sheltered sands, muddy sands, muds and boulder shores. It exhibits a good natural transition from lower shore communities, through upper shore saltmarsh to fen vegetation.
Mill Bay supports the largest intact block of saltmarsh in Northern Ireland. Internationally important numbers of wildfowl and waders overwinter on the site, including pale-bellied Brent geese, great crested grebes, shelduck, scaup, redshank and oystercatchers. Carlingford Lough is also important for terns and has historically been an important site for breeding Roseate terns.
- ASSI Guidance for Public Bodies/Competent Authorities
- Coastal Areas of Special Scientific Interest
- Conservation Management Plans for Northern Ireland’s Special Areas of Conservation
- European Marine Sites - Marine Special Areas of Conservation and Special Protection Areas
- International Year of the Salmon 2019
- Management of Special Areas of Conservation (SAC)
- Marine Conservation Zones
- Marine historic environment
- Marine Protected Areas
- Marine Ramsar sites
- Monitoring marine habitats and species
- Movanagher Fish Farm
- Portrush Coastal Zone
- River Bush Salmon Station
- Salmon Conservation
- Special Areas of Conservation
- Special Areas of Conservation for Harbour porpoise
- Special Protection Areas