Carrickarade ASSI

Protected area type: Areas of Special Scientific Interest
Feature type: 
  • Habitat
  • Species
  • Earth Science
  • Antrim
Council: Causeway Coast and Glens
Guidance and literature: Carrickarade ASSI

The island of Carrickarade and the adjoining mainland represent a section through a volcano which exploded during the Tertiary period 60 million years ago. Volcanic ash and rock debris fill the vent. Later, during a quieter period of volcanic activity, veins of dolerite were intruded into the rocks. 
The limestone cliffs contain one exceptional raised sea cave which has the only known example of speleotherm development within the Ulster white limestone.

The cliff tops habitats include maritime grassland, acid heath and chalk grassland. The site is home to two rare snails, the wrinkled snail and the heath snail, and breeding birds including twites, kittiwakes, guillemots and razorbills.

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