SPA description
(information as published 2001)

Abberton Reservoir

image: SPA location map 

 

Abberton Reservoir is located close to the coast of Essex in eastern England. It is a large, shallow, freshwater storage reservoir built in a long, shallow valley and is the largest freshwater body in Essex. It is one of the most important reservoirs in Britain for wintering wildfowl, with a key role as a roost for wildfowl and waders feeding in adjacent estuarine areas. The site is also important for winter feeding and autumn moulting of waterbirds. The margins of parts of the reservoir have well-developed plant communities that provide important opportunities for feeding, nesting and shelter. Abberton Reservoir is important especially as an autumn arrival area for waterbirds that subsequently spend the winter elsewhere. 

 


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:

 
Over winter;
 
Golden Plover Pluvialis apricaria, 3,714 individuals representing at least 1.5% 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:
 
During the breeding season;
 
Cormorant Phalacrocorax carbo, 490 pairs representing at least 1.2% of the breeding Northwestern Europe population (5 year mean, 1993-1997)
 
Over winter;
 
Gadwall Anas strepera, 518 individuals representing at least 1.7% of the wintering Northwestern Europe population (5 year peak mean 1991/2 - 1995/6)
 
Shoveler Anas clypeata, 654 individuals representing at least 1.6% of the wintering Northwestern/Central Europe population (5 year peak mean 1991/2 - 1995/6)
 
Teal Anas crecca, 5,326 individuals representing at least 1.3% 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 39,155 individual waterfowl (5 year peak mean 1991/2 - 1995/6) including: Black-tailed Godwit Limosa limosa islandica, Lapwing Vanellus vanellus, Coot Fulica atra, Goldeneye Bucephala clangula, Tufted Duck Aythya fuligula, Pochard Aythya ferina, Pintail Anas acuta, Wigeon Anas penelope, Cormorant Phalacrocorax carbo, Great Crested Grebe Podiceps cristatus, Shoveler Anas clypeata, Teal Anas crecca, Gadwall Anas strepera, Golden Plover Pluvialis apricaria.


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.