UK habitats and species


The UK has a wealth of land and freshwater habitats, including dunes, fens, grassland, heathland, marsh, rivers and woodland.  Together they are home to many thousands of species.


UK habitats

JNCC’s work on habitats includes habitat protection, designation and advice, through the development of guidelines for Sites of Special Scientific Interest (SSSIs), and the co-ordination of the identification and submission of possible Special Areas of Conservation (SACs) to the European Commission.  Additionally, work is undertaken on habitat survey, monitoring and classification, through the provision of advice on habitat surveillance and monitoring, and working closely with the country agencies on guidance for habitats on protected sites through Common Standards Monitoring.

For more information about UK habitats>>>


Species conservation in the UK

JNCC has a number of statutory responsibilities in relation to UK species conservation.  This includes providing advice on UK policy and legislation regarding species, setting up and supporting surveillance and monitoring to assess and report on the changing status of species, and carrying out quality assurance assessments of Red Lists, which record species at risk.  JNCC also engages with conservation-orientated non-governmental organisations and specialist societies.

The public consultation on the 6th Quinquennial Review (QQR) of schedules 5 and 8 (protected wild animals and plants) of the Wildlife and Countryside Act (1981)  ran until 30 March 2013.

For more information about species conservation in the UK>>> 


Status and trends of the UK's natural environment

The status of the UK’s natural environment and trends in status changes underpin most of JNCC’s work.  Traditionally, trends have been calculated to identify changes in the distribution, extent, status or quality of species and habitats.  This information relies heavily on the results from surveillance and monitoring schemes and biological recording.

The status and trends of species and habitats also provide building blocks that are used to support the UK’s commitment to outcome-oriented reporting and assessment. They form the basis of UK and country biodiversity indicators, evidence reports, reports in response to UK reporting obligations, and advice.

For more information about status and trends of the UK's natural environment>>>