email a friend
printable version
Location Ireland, East,North East
Central coordinates 6o 15.00' West  53o 43.00' North
IBA criteria B1i, B2, C3, C6
Area 404 ha
Altitude 0 - 10m
Year of IBA assessment 2000

BirdWatch Ireland

Site description A rather narrow estuary, which widens at its mouth and comprises intertidal mudflat and saltmarsh habitats. It is situated on the east coast, at the border between Counties Louth and Meath and is the port for the town of Drogheda. The estuary has been modified by the construction of training walls on either side, to facilitate deep water access to the port.

Populations of IBA trigger species

Species Season Period Population estimate Quality of estimate IBA Criteria IUCN Category
Brent Goose Branta bernicla winter  1996  210 individuals  good  B1i, C3  Least Concern 
Red Knot Calidris canutus winter  1996  1,777 individuals  good  B2  Least Concern 
Little Tern Sternula albifrons breeding  1995  14 breeding pairs  good  B2, C6  Least Concern 

Protected areas

Protected area Designation Area (ha) Relationship with IBA Overlap with IBA (ha)  
Boyne Coast and Estuary - IE0001957 Habitats Directive 630 protected area overlaps with site 340  
Boyne Estuary Wildfowl Sanctuary 0 unknown 0  
Boyne Estuary SPA - IE0004080 Birds Directive 594 protected area overlaps with site 369  
River Boyne and River Blackwater - IE0002299 Habitats Directive 2,321 protected area is adjacent to site 0  


IUCN habitat Habitat detail Extent (% of site)
Coastline Mud flats & sand flats; Salt marshes; Sand dunes & beaches; Tidal rivers & enclosed tidal waters  100%

Land use

Land-use Extent (% of site)
fisheries/aquaculture 80%
hunting 100%
urban/industrial/transport 20%

Protection status National High International HighIBA overlaps with Wildfowl Sanctuary (Boyne Estuary; area not known). 404 ha of IBA covered by Special Protection Area (Boyne Estuary, 404 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 (2014) Important Bird Areas factsheet: Boyne estuary. Downloaded from on 21/10/2014

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