Summary data for UK SACs, SCIs and cSACs

Spreadsheet of UK SAC information as contained within the Natura 2000 standard data forms submitted to the European Union.


Summary data for all designated and candidate SACs in the UK is included in a Microsoft Excel  spreadsheet, which enables users of Excel to carry out a number of analyses of the SAC list. By using Excel's AutoFilter function (Data > Filter > AutoFilter) it is possible, for example, to list all SACs supporting any Habitats Directive marine features, or, by using the Custom AutoFilter function, to carry out multiple queries such as identifying all SACs in Scotland that support both otter and salmon at global grade A or B. The columns can also be sorted in a variety of ways (Data > Sort) for example alphabetically by SAC name, by feature name, or by SAC area.


An explanatory note is provided for most columns - to read this, hover your mouse cursor over the column heading.Further information about Microsoft Excel is available from Microsoft.


The spreadsheet has been compressed into a ZIP archive to reduce download size - you will need compression software such WInZip or StuffIt to expand the file.

Current version is 17 September 2018; previous version 1 June 2018.
Please note that from the January 2016 release onwards, SAC and SPA information has been combined together into a single spreadsheet. Some of the tabs are however specific to SACs – this is indicated by the title of the tab. Where a tab contains both SAC and SPA data there is always a column for designation type.
Review changes in this dataset.

The spreadsheet contains a number of tabs/worksheets:

  • SAC site details contains summary information about the SACs themselves, including their size, location and date of designation. This tab contains descriptions of the quality/importance of the site and physical characteristics.
  • Admin regions contains details of the administrative regions for each site using the NUTS Level 2 categories.
  • SAC interest features contains a full listing of all Habitats Directive features occurring on SACs in the UK. This includes non-qualifying ('D-grade') features that are not a reason for SAC selection at a particular site. Note that a feature may not occur on all parts of a site, especially in the case of large SACs.
  • Maps offers a simple mapping facility. If a particular feature or site is selected in the above worksheets using the Autofilter function, a dot map will be displayed showing the location of the site(s).
  • Habitat classes indicates the percentage of each SAC/SPA comprised of certain broad habitat types. These are intended to give a general impression of the character of the SAC. They should not be confused with the Annex I habitats, which are listed in the SAC interest feature worksheet.
  • Threats and pressures lists the positive and negative factors that impact on the site. These data were collated for the first time in the UK as part of the December 2015 submission to the EU.
  • Management Body – indicates the appropriate Statutory Nature Conservation Bodies
  • Management plan – indicates whether or not a management plan exists for the site.
  • Designation type – this refers to a very limited range of National Designations, specifically SSSI, (ASSI in Northern Ireland), Marine Nature Reserves and National Nature Reserves.  


In some cases JNCC has been able to convert codes such as Habitat codes into meaningful text - whereas others the codes are retained so as to not take up too much space in the spreadsheet..

The official guidance (and explanation of codes) for the SDFs is available on European Topic Centre on Biological Diversity website. (follow the link at the top of the page to the Standard Data form reference document).


The spreadsheet is updated after any new SAC information is submitted to the EC, so if you have previously saved it to your own disk, please check that you are still using the latest version.

In conjunction with the download of this spreadsheet, a GIS shape file is also available to download.