SPA description
(information as published 2001)

Black Cart

image: SPA location map 


Black Cart SPA is located in Renfrewshire in west-central Scotland. It is a 3 km tidal stretch of the Black Cart Water and its associated floodplain, located directly north of Glasgow Airport. This stretch of Black Cart Water supports abundant submerged aquatic vegetation, typical of brackish conditions, including Fennel Pondweed Potamogeton pectinatus, Floating Sweet-grass Glyceria fluitans and Beaked Tasselweed Ruppia maritima. The floodplain is mostly semi-intensified pasture, but also includes small creeks, small stands of Common Reed Phragmites australis and areas of rush Juncus spp. dominated grassland. Most of the land is used for low-intensity cattle and sheep grazing. Much of the damp pasture along the southern bank of the river is liable to winter flooding, and livestock are removed from this area during winter months. The site is of European importance owing to the presence of significant numbers of overwintering Whooper Swan Cygnus cygnus of the Icelandic breeding population. The swans feed, roost and loaf over the whole area within the SPA, while their main mid- and late-winter foraging areas are on agriculturally improved land outside the SPA and to the west of the site. It is envisaged that management of these important areas will be undertaken through other means. 


Qualifying species

For individual species accounts visit the Species Accounts section

This site qualifies under Article 4.1 of the Directive (79/409/EEC) by supporting populations of European importance of the following species listed on Annex I of the Directive:
Over winter;
Whooper Swan Cygnus cygnus, 220 individuals representing at least 4.0% of the wintering population in Great Britain (early 90s winter peak mean)


Many designated sites are on private land: the listing of a site in these pages does not imply any right of public access.
Note that sites selected for waterbird species on the basis of their occurrence in the breeding, passage or winter periods also provide legal protection for these species when they occur at other times of the year.