Coastal and marine

Priority habitats: Coastal sand dunes, Peat and clay exposures, Sabellaria spinulosa reefs, Saline lagoons and Saltmarsh.

Some of the most important wildlife sites in Europe, including two of the most significant estuaries (The Wash and Humber), occur along the coast. Both estuaries are designated Special Areas of Conservation (SACs), as well as ‘Saltfleetby-Theddlethorpe Dunes and Gibraltar Point’.

The coastline supports intertidal habitats and dune formations among the best of their type anywhere in the UK. The coast also provides feeding and wintering habitats for internationally important numbers of birds. However, these birds and the ecological functions of the designated sites are also dependent on the continued availability of suitable inland areas – a mosaic of terrestrial habitats for roosting, feeding and breeding.

These habitats are dynamic; they rely on coastal processes for their existence and as a result, are subject to natural changes in quality and extent. The aim is to allow these processes to continue to operate by managing the impacts of human influences on them. Human influence is both direct (development on sand dunes, pollution and disturbance, for example) and indirect (the alteration of natural processes through climate change or the installation of coastal defences).

Effective management of human impacts will include the retention of existing habitats, the creation of new ones and the rehabilitation of degraded sites, bringing benefits not only to wildlife, but also to the communities and industries along the coast.

Vision for Greater Lincolnshire's coast and marine environment:

  • Existing habitats are protected from the pressure of harmful development.
  • Coastal habitats have been enhanced and extended, creating a sustainable network for wildlife.
  • Sustainable development on all parts of the coastline has created a coastal environment that benefits people and wildlife.
  • The importance of coastal and marine biodiversity for tourism and the local economy has been recognised.
  • The North Sea is managed sustainably with respect to global marine factors and in a manner complementary to the environment, economy and society of Greater Lincolnshire; including reducing and compensating for the impacts of climate change and sea level rise.
  • Implementation of the Marine and Coastal Access Act has resulted in an ecologically coherent, well-managed and effective network of Marine Protected Areas including the creation of Marine Conservation Zones and the development of a robust marine planning system.
Want to know how to get involved?