Loch Carron

Loch Carron (Scottish Gaelic: "Loch Carrann") is a sea loch on the west coast of Ross and Cromarty in the Scottish Highlands, which separates the Lochalsh peninsula from the Applecross peninsula, and from the Stomeferry headland east of Loch Kishorn. It is the point at which the River Carron enters the North Atlantic Ocean[citation needed].

Loch Carron MPA
Looking across Loch Carron to the Applecross peninsula.
The location of Loch Carron, in Ross and Cromarty
LocationRoss and Cromarty, Scotland
Coordinates57°22′N 5°31′W
Area2,284.47 ha (8.8204 sq mi)[1]
DesignationScottish Government
OperatorMarine Scotland
Strome Castle on the shore of Loch Carron.
Loch Carron (Scottish Highlands)
Loch Carron (Scottish Highlands)

According to the marine charts, the tidal currents reach 3 knots (5.6 km/h; 3.5 mph) in the narrows, although not much water disturbance is visible in the flow. At the narrows, the depth of water is less than 20 metres, but in the basins on either side, it extends to a depth of more than 100 metres.[2] Beneath the cliffs at Strome Castle is a colony of flame shells;[2] with a population of over 250 million the loch is the world's largest flame shell bed, and was designated as a Nature Conservation Marine Protected Area (NCMPA) in 2017, with the protection being made permanent in 2018.[3] The new MPA of 23 km2 took effect on 19 May 2019.[4] Within the MPA the use of fishing gear that may damage the seabed is prohibited, although rod and line fishing and creeling is permitted.[5]

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