SPA description
(information as published 2001)

Loch Shiel

image: SPA location map 


Loch Shiel is situated in Lochaber, between Moidart and Sunart in the western Highlands. It is a large, deep, sheltered, oligotrophic glacial freshwater loch with a maximum depth of 128 m. Emergent vegetation is virtually absent, but there are submerged macrophyte communities typical of oligotrophic waters, as well as a fairly varied littoral benthic fauna. The site is of importance as a traditional breeding locality for Black-throated Diver Gavia arctica

Qualifying species

For individual species accounts visit the Species Accounts section

This site qualifies under Article 4.1 of the Directive (79/409/EEC) by supporting populations of European importance of the following species listed on Annex I of the Directive:
During the breeding season;
Black-throated Diver Gavia arctica, 4 pairs representing up to 2.5% of the breeding population in Great Britain



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