Runswick Bay / Boulby (Area 4)
Runswick Bay is located north-west of Whitby and is 68km square. Runswick MCZ has a highly productive seabed and is recommended for 7 out of the 12 different seafloor habitats found here. These habitats include rock, sediment and gravel, which provide the perfect place for a variety of marine life, such as the ocean quahog.
Shallow rocky areas here are dominated by kelps and red seaweeds, while deeper areas are encrusted in a living faunal turf of sponges, sea squirts, sea urchins and starfish. Interspersed with sand and gravel, this area is also important for burrowing creatures such as worms.
Why is this place important
Runswick Bay provides spawning and nursery grounds for many fish, including herring, sprat, cod, whiting and plaice. Harbour porpoises are regularly recorded here alongside foraging seabirds, such as the noisy kittiwake (above), which colonise the surrounding cliffs.
Local stories and facts
Many fishing vessels have been lost when attempting to cross by Whitby Rock, near to Runswick Bay. The Hasset FV (GY489) fishing trawler was lost near Runswick Bay on the 18th September 1953. The numerous wrecks found in the Whitby area are popular for adventurous divers and, in themselves, harbour an array of marine life.
What you can do to help
You can write to your local MP to show them the importance of protected areas. Use the form below to find your local MP and get hold of our template letter.
Further Reading On Whitby Sea Anglers