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Marine Protected Areas

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RYA Scotland has been closely involved in the development of the Scottish network of Marine Protected Areas, which includes existing designated sites. We recognise that for many members seeing wildlife is an important part of the sailing experience and have supported the MPA process.

RYA Scotland has worked closely with Scottish Natural Heritage to ensure that vulnerable habitats such as maerl and seagrass beds were not at risk from anchoring by recreational boats and conversely that anchoring would not be banned. We have worked with the editor of the Clyde Cruising Club Sailing Directions and Anchorages to ensure that recreational sailors are not inadvertently encouraged to anchor in inappropriate places. As a consequence of this work the only place where there is a ban on anchoring is Loch Creran where anchoring is banned except in the four designated anchorages to protect the rare and vulnerable serpulid reefs. See attached document for further details of this site. 

RYA Scotland is continuing to engage with SNH and Marine Scotland in relation to the designation of MPAs and particularly over the management measures where we strongly encourage the RYA policy of education not legislation.

Scotland also has Historic MPAs, which mainly protect important wrecks.

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