Current monitoring and data collection

The table below (last updated in November 2020) provides a summary of the known monitoring, research and data collection currently taking place on the North Tyneside, Northumberland Berwickshire coast. The table will be reviewed and updated annually by our Data, Monitoring and Research Group.


Description  Organisations who collect information  Details 
Site condition monitoring 
Monitoring condition of European sites (SPAs/SACs)  NatureScot  Responsible for reporting on the condition of SACs and SPAs in Scotland.  


SPA condition assessment uses data from a number of sources including the Seabird Monitoring Programme and WeBS. 

Natural England  Responsible for reporting on the condition of SACs and SPAs in England.  


SPA condition assessment uses data from a number of sources including the Seabird Monitoring Programme and WeBS.  

Monitoring condition of MCZs  Natural England  Responsible for reporting on MCZ condition.  


Baseline monitoring on Coquet to St Mary’s MCZ. Aln Estuary monitoring in partnership with Northumberland IFCA  

Monitoring condition of SSSIs  NatureScot  SSSI condition monitoring in Scotland   
Natural England  SSSI condition monitoring in England   
Extent/Condition of Habitats  NatureScot  Commission surveys jointly with Natural England to assess the condition of interest features of the Berwickshire and North Northumberland Coast SAC   
Natural England  Commission surveys jointly with NatureScot to assess the condition of interest features of the Berwickshire and North Northumberland Coast SAC 


Annual Seagrass survey at Lindisfarne (with Environment Agency) 


Monitoring at Lindisfarne NNR and Tweed Estuary SAC plus shallow inlets and bays 


MSFD project in Coquet to St Mary’s MCZ and BNNC SAC with Newcastle University and Northumberland IFCA 

Environment Agency  Annual Seagrass surveys and macroalgae surveys at Lindisfarne (with Natural England) 


WFD monitoring of saltmarsh at Holy Island/Budle Bay/Coquet and Aln 

Berwickshire Marine Reserve  Seabed mapping and sampling 

Towed underwater video and 360-degree video 

Species monitoring   
Monitoring of Grey Seals  National Trust for Scotland  Annual counts of SSSI/SAC beaches   
National Trust  Annual pup counts on Farne Islands    
Monitoring of breeding seabirds   Natural England  Monitoring of shorebirds at Lindisfarne NNR   
National Trust  Monitoring of breeding bird numbers and the productivity of selected species at Farne Islands and at Long Nanny   
National Trust for Scotland  Monitoring of seabird numbers at St Abbs Head and the productivity of kittiwakes and shags   
RSPB  Monitoring of seabird numbers on Coquet Island 


Coast Care Northumberland  Breeding ringed plover (Lindisfarne to Howick) `   
Monitoring of wintering bird numbers  Space for Shorebirds  Wader counts at selected locations as part of regular disturbance monitoring   
Marine Nature Partnership  Collect records of eider sighting from the public via the Eider Aware Project   
BTO   Regular counts of wintering coast birds are made by volunteers as part of the Wetland Bird Survey (WeBS)   
Natural England  Detailed weekly counts of bird assemblage inc. coordination of monthly WeBS count at Lindisfarne NNR  


Grey goose roost counts (Lindisfarne NNR and adjacent sites) as part of annual WWT grey goose census 

Cetacean Monitoring  North East Cetacean Project  Collation of cetacean sightings.  

Surveys of white-beaked dolphin 

  Newcastle University  Acoustic monitoring of cetacean distribution   
Dead or stranded marine mammals  The Scottish Marine Animal Stranding Scheme  Reports of dead or stranded marine mammals collated   
UK Cetacean Strandings Investigation Programme   
Dead seabirds  North East Beached Bird Surveys (NEBBS)  Northumberland/North Tyneside only 


Northumberland IFCA carries out NEBBS surveys on Druridge Bay and Beadnell Bay 


Natural England  Lindisfarne NNR undertakes beached bird survey and autumn/winter AI surveys   
Fish and Fisheries  Northumberland IFCA  Fish surveys: Twice yearly surveys of the Aln Estuary MCZ. Previous surveys at Long Nanny and Druridge Bay 


ShellfishLobster stock assessment, 

Escape gap surveys, Permit holder catch returns, brown crab maturity project (jointly with St Abbs Marine Station and Blue Marine) 


General: Hand gathering/bait collection data collected, sightings of fisheries activity recorded, MPA assessments and monitoring of fishing impacts on protected features 

River Tweed Commission  Fish catches on the Tweed catchment   
Environment Agency  Autumn TraC fish surveys on Tweed with seine and fyke nets   
Berwickshire Marine Reserve  Population dynamics of brown crab and lobster (with St Abbs Marine Station) 


Citizen Science project to capture Wolffish sightings 

St Abbs Marine Station  Population dynamics of brown crab and lobster    
Newcastle University  Lugworm and periwinkle fisheries within 

the BNNC EMS (2013-2017) – PhD research 


Use of vessel sightings and social surveys to measure pot fishing pressure and understand 

where and how people fish 


Use of stable isotope data to reveal pathways supporting production of North 

Sea fish  


Trawl, video, trap and acoustic methods to assess fish distribution and assemblages 

CEFAS  Nethrops monitoring in Farnes Deep   
Presence of Non-Native Species  Natural England  Settlement panels at chosen locations. Analysed by MSc students (when available) 


Environment Agency   
Physical and chemical monitoring   
Water Quality  SEPA  WFD monitoring and bathing water quality monitoring 


Environment Agency also carry out nutrient monitoring at Holy Island and on the Coquet catchment 

Environment Agency   
Northumbrian Water  Combined sewer overflow annual spill data (event duration monitoring) 


Bathing water quality data (Cullercoats) 


Water chemistry and temperature  Marine Scotland  Temperature, salinity, and water chemistry data collected at St Abbs Marine Station   
North East Coastal Group  Temperature data from buoy at Newbiggin   
Berwickshire Marine Reserve  30 temperature loggers on creel pots throughout the reserve   
Environment Agency  Offshore water quality samples taken by national team   
Newcastle University  Sea-temperature monitoring with robo-limpets 


Monitoring of four MarClim sites within Northumberland 

Shoreline Monitoring Programme and coastal change monitoring  Environment Agency      Bathometry data etc. on NECO website   
Local Authorities/RFCC  Coastal erosion monitoring   
Marine Nature Partnership  CoastSnap project (fixed point photography at selected locations) – to commence in 2021   
Plastic Pollution/Beach Litter  Marine Nature Partnership  Collected using Beachwatch Methodology   
Berwickshire Marine Reserve   
Coast Care Northumberland   
Marine Conservation Society   
Northumbrian Water  Beach clean survey data – annual trends and sources   
Recreational activities and disturbance   
Recreational usage of the coast  Newcastle University   Data from CoastXplore app (Capturing Our Coast project) 


Production of recreational pressure maps (research project with Natural England) 

National Trust  Records of visitor numbers to the Farne Islands   
Berwickshire Marine Reserve  Pressure mapping of activities with the Reserve    
Natural England  Records visitor numbers with trigger counters at 2 locations on Lindisfarne NNR (both on HI) – this will be extended 2021 to a further 4 locations across the NNR   
Marine Nature Partnership  Possible data on levels of beach usage from CoastSnap project (starts 2021)   
Recreational disturbance  Space for Shorebirds  Monitoring of disturbance of wintering waders on Northumberland coast   
Natural England  Monitoring of bird disturbance on the Lindisfarne NNR   
National Trust  Recording of disturbance at Long Nanny tern colony   
National Trust for Scotland  Work with local Universities on studies into impacts of disturbance at St Abbs Head   
Marine Nature Partnership  Reports of disturbance to eiders ccollected through the Eider Aware Project   
Anchoring  National Trust  Recording of numbers and locations of vessels anchoring around the Farne Islands   
Aircraft Disturbance to birds  National Trust  Aircraft disturbance at Long Nanny tern colony logged by seasonal wardens   
RSPB  Record keeping at Coquet Island   
Natural England  Recording aircraft disturbance during shorebird breeding season   
National Trust for Scotland  Record keeping at St Abbs Head   
Ongoing research areas not covered above   
Impacts of noise on marine invertebrates  St Abbs Marine Station     
Impacts of electromagnetic fields on decapods  St Abbs Marine Station     
Tern ecology and migration  Newcastle University     
Dove Time Series plankton sampling  Newcastle University