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Protected broad-scale habitats in offshore MPAs - WMS layers 2023


These Web Map Service layers show point, line and polygon data for broad-scale habitats (BSH) in offshore Marine Protected Areas (MPAs) in UK waters.

BSHs are groups of habitats with shared ecological requirements which capture the coarse biological and physical diversity of the seabed. BSHs are explicitly designated as protected features of many Marine Conservation Zones. In other offshore MPAs (e.g. Special Areas of Conservation (SACs) and Scottish MPAs), BSHs are afforded protection by virtue of other designated habitat features (e.g. Annex I Reefs and Annex I Sandbanks in SACs).

The WMS layers include the following BSH features:

  • High energy circalittoral rock;
  • Moderate energy circalittoral rock;
  • Subtidal coarse sediment;
  • Subtidal sand;
  • Subtidal mud;
  • Subtidal mixed sediment;
  • Subtidal coarse sediment/Subtidal mixed sediments mosaic;
  • Deep-sea bed.

These layers are available to view on the JNCC MPA mapper and can also be accessed via our WMS:

Resource type Service

Topic category Biota

Reference date 2023·12·19

19/12/2023 - BSH polygon layer updated to include EUSeaMap 2023 data in South West Deeps (East) MCZ, EUSeamap 2021 in Greater Haig Fras MCZ and South of the Isles of Scilly MCZ where survey data is not available. Included BGS Kriging study results for South-West Deeps (West) MCZ where survey data does not exist. Updated West of Copeland MCZ deleting UKSeaMap 2018 and uploading Isle of Man Sandbanks survey 2005 and EUSeaMap 2021 data. 04/03/2022 - BSH point layer updated to include Dogger Bank SAC survey data from CEND0708, IBTS 2011 North Sea survey and CEND1014. BSH polygon layer updated with EUSeaMap 2021 data for Dogger Bank SAC and East of Start Point MCZ. 16/08/2021 - BSH point and line layers updated to include new survey data from CEND0917 01/06/2021 - BSH polygon layer update to remove polygons from map GB000980. 22/07/2020 - Datasets updated to include feature data for the joint inshore/offshore Natural England led Tranche 3 MCZs 26/02/2020 - Datasets updated to include feature data for the offshore JNCC led Tranche 3 MCZs 26/02/2019 - Datasets compiled

Responsible organisation
Digital and Data Solutions, JNCC pointOfContact

Limitations on public access No limitations

Use constraints Individual record ownership varies, and is attributed in the feature 'copyright' information on the MPA mapper. Further information on re-use limitations should be sought from the record owner.

Metadata date 2023·12·20

Metadata point of contact
Digital and Data Solutions, JNCC

Temporal extent 1998·01·01 2021·12·31

Spatial extent
North 63.88707
South 47.43539
East 3.39855
West -25.13538
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