Protected area type: Special Areas of Conservation
Feature type: 
  • Habitat
  • Marine
  • Down
Council: Newry, Mourne and Down
Guidance and literature: Strangford Lough SAC

Strangford Lough is a large (150 km2) marine inlet on the east coast of County Down, of which about 50 km2 lies between high water mark mean tide (HWMMT) and low water mark mean tide (LWMMT).  Its northern end lies some 15 km east of Central Belfast (6 km from the outskirts).   Downpatrick lies 5 km west of the south west corner.  Strangford, Killyleagh, Whiterock, Comber, Newtownards, Greyabbey, Kircubbin and Portaferry are situated on the edge of the Lough. 

The Lough supports an impressive range of marine habitats and communities with over 2,000 recorded species.  It is important for marine invertebrates, algae and saltmarsh plants, for wintering and breeding wetland birds, and for marine mammals.

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