Lochs of Harray and Stenness

Country/territory: United Kingdom

IBA criteria met: B1i, B2, C3 (2007)
For more information about IBA criteria, please click here

Area: 1,779 ha

Royal Society for the Protection of Birds
IBA conservation status
Year of assessment (most recent) State (condition) Pressure (threat) Response (action)
2007 very unfavourable medium low
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Site description (2007 baseline)
Run-off from a large part of Orkney's West Mainland enters the sea via these two lochs. The shallow freshwater Loch of Harray becomes brackish at the junction with the Loch of Stenness, which is entirely brackish and classed as a lagoon. The flora and fauna therefore consists of brackish, marine and freshwater species. The lochs support large numbers of wintering wildfowl. Anser anser are from the Icelandic breeding population.

Recommended citation
BirdLife International (2024) Important Bird Area factsheet: Lochs of Harray and Stenness. Downloaded from on 24/02/2024.