SPA description
(information as published 2001)

Hamford Water

image: SPA location map 

 

Hamford Water is located on the Essex coast in eastern England. It is a large, shallow estuarine basin comprising tidal creeks and islands, intertidal mud- and sand-flats, and saltmarsh. The rich invertebrate fauna and sheltered nature of the site results in its importance for internationally important numbers of waterbirds during the passage and winter periods, as well as for breeding terns in summer. The shallow and sheltered nature of the complex provides refuge for waterbirds, especially in periods of severe weather. 

 


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;
 
Little Tern Sterna albifrons, 55 pairs representing at least 2.3% of the breeding population in Great Britain (4 year mean 1992-1995)
 
Over winter;
 
Avocet Recurvirostra avosetta, 317 individuals representing at least 25.0% of the wintering population in Great Britain (5 year peak mean 1991/2 - 1995/6)
 
Golden Plover Pluvialis apricaria, 4,118 individuals representing at least 1.6% of the wintering population in Great Britain (5 year peak mean 1991/2 - 1995/6)
 
Ruff Philomachus pugnax, 53 individuals representing at least 7.6% of the wintering population in Great Britain (5 year peak mean 1991/2 - 1995/6)
 
This site also qualifies under Article 4.2 of the Directive (79/409/EEC) by supporting populations of European importance of the following migratory species:
 
On passage;
 
Ringed Plover Charadrius hiaticula, 1,572 individuals representing at least 3.1% of the Europe/Northern Africa - wintering population (5 year peak mean 1991/2 - 1995/6)
 
Over winter;
 
Black-tailed Godwit Limosa limosa islandica, 1,121 individuals representing at least 1.6% of the wintering Iceland - breeding population (5 year peak mean 1991/2 - 1995/6)
 
Dark-bellied Brent Goose Branta bernicla bernicla, 6,892 individuals representing at least 2.3% of the wintering Western Siberia/Western Europe population (5 year peak mean 1991/2 - 1995/6)
 
Grey Plover Pluvialis squatarola, 3,251 individuals representing at least 2.2% of the wintering Eastern Atlantic - wintering population (5 year peak mean 1991/2 - 1995/6)
 
Ringed Plover Charadrius hiaticula, 520 individuals representing at least 1.0% of the wintering Europe/Northern Africa - wintering population (5 year peak mean 1991/2 - 1995/6)
 
Teal Anas crecca, 4,206 individuals representing at least 1.1% of the wintering Northwestern Europe population
 
Assemblage qualification: A wetland of international importance.
 
The area qualifies under Article 4.2 of the Directive (79/409/EEC) by regularly supporting at least 20,000 waterfowl
 
Over winter, the area regularly supports 44,461 individual waterfowl (5 year peak mean 1991/2 - 1995/6) including: Redshank Tringa totanus, Dunlin Calidris alpina alpina, Lapwing Vanellus vanellus, Wigeon Anas penelope, Shelduck Tadorna tadorna, Black-tailed Godwit Limosa limosa islandica, Grey Plover Pluvialis squatarola, Ringed Plover Charadrius hiaticula, Teal Anas crecca, Dark-bellied Brent Goose Branta bernicla bernicla, Ruff Philomachus pugnax, Golden Plover Pluvialis apricaria, Avocet Recurvirostra avosetta

 


Note:

Many designated sites are on private land: the listing of a site in these pages does not imply any right of public access.
 
Note that sites selected for waterbird species on the basis of their occurrence in the breeding, passage or winter periods also provide legal protection for these species when they occur at other times of the year.