email a friend
printable version
Location France, Nord-Pas-de-Calais
Central coordinates 1o 34.00' East  50o 32.00' North
IBA criteria A4i, A4iii, B1i, C3, C4, C6
Area 5,050 ha
Altitude 0 - 43m
Year of IBA assessment 2000

Ligue Pour La Protection des Oiseaux

Site description The River Canche estuary, with mudflats, raised saltmarsh, beaches, sand-dunes, freshwater marshes and wet meadows.

Key Biodiversity The site is important for passage and wintering gulls. The site holds 20,000 or more waterbirds in winter, on a regular basis.

Populations of IBA trigger species

Species Season Period Population estimate Quality of estimate IBA Criteria IUCN Category
Larus argentatus winter  1991  10,000-20,000 individuals  B1i  Not Recognised 
Great Black-backed Gull Larus marinus winter  1991  2,000-10,000 individuals  A4i, B1i, C3  Least Concern 
Lesser Black-backed Gull Larus fuscus passage  1991  1,000-10,000 individuals  A4i, B1i, C3  Least Concern 
European Nightjar Caprimulgus europaeus breeding  1991  10 breeding pairs  C6  Least Concern 
Wood Lark Lullula arborea breeding  1991  1-10 breeding pairs  C6  Least Concern 
A4iii Species group - waterbirds winter  1991  20,000-49,999 individuals  unknown  A4iii, C4   

Protected areas

Protected area Designation Area (ha) Relationship with IBA Overlap with IBA (ha)  
Baie de Canche National Nature Reserve 505 protected area contained by site 505  
Estuaire de la Canche Hunting Reserve 4,000 protected area contained by site 4,000  


IUCN habitat Habitat detail Extent (% of site)
Forest Alluvial and very wet forest; Mixed woodland; Native coniferous woodland  6%
Grassland Humid grasslands  -
Wetlands (inland) Rivers and streams; Standing brackish and salt water; Standing freshwater; Tidal rivers and enclosed tidal waters; Water fringe vegetation  -
Sea Open Sea  40%
Artificial - terrestrial Urban parks and gardens  -
Coastline Mud flats & sand flats; Salt marshes; Sand dunes & beaches  -

Land use

Land-use Extent (% of site)
fisheries/aquaculture 2%
forestry 2%
hunting 30%
tourism/recreation 30%
urban/industrial/transport -
not utilised 40%

Protection status National High International High505 ha of IBA covered by Nature Reserve (Baie de Canche, 505 ha). 4,000 ha of IBA covered by Hunting Reserve (Estuaire de la Canche, 4,000 ha). 4,465 ha of IBA covered by Special Protection Area (Estuaire de la Canche, 4,465 ha).

Contribute  Please click here to help BirdLife conserve the world's birds - your data for this IBA and others are vital for helping protect the environment.

Recommended citation  BirdLife International (2016) Important Bird and Biodiversity Area factsheet: Estuaire de la Canche. Downloaded from on 23/10/2016

To provide new information to update this factsheet or to correct any errors, please email BirdLife