Anchors from recreational boats can damage seagrass fronds and roots when they embed into the seabed, dragging an anchor can uproot seagrass, and anchor chain can scrape the seabed as it pivots around the anchor point with changes in wind direction and tide.
If you are a recreational boater, there are ways you can minimise impacts from anchoring:
- Find out if there are protected seabed habitats in the area you are planning to anchor. View our seagrass location maps, to see locations within the five Special Areas of Conservation we’re working in.
- Anchor away from sensitive habitats where possible
- Consider using an existing mooring rather than anchoring within a seagrass bed.
- Choose the correct anchor for the type of seabed to avoid drag.
- Try to target bare sand away from the edge of seagrass beds when deploying the anchor and consider the pivot area of your anchor chain to ensure it avoids encroaching into protected habitats.
- Flake out the correct amount of chain (4 x max depth at high water or, if using a chain and warp, 6 x maximum depth at high water) to minimise any chain abrasion on the seabed.
- You can find this and other practical advice in our publication The Green Guide to Anchoring and Moorings, created with The Green Blue – the joint environmental awareness programme of our partner the RYA and British Marine.