Marine Habitats Correlation

There are two marine habitat classification systems that are commonly used in the UK: the JNCC Marine Habitat Classification for Britain and Ireland and EUNIS, for work related to European obligations. These classification systems define all the marine habitats known to occur in the UK. Lists of marine habitats that are of particular importance to conservation have been defined under various legislative instruments. These include:

It is often necessary to translate between EUNIS and the JNCC Marine Habitat Classification for Britain and Ireland, or to identify which habitats from these classifications would qualify as a listed habitat. In order to do this, JNCC have created correlation tables between different systems, stating the relationship between different habitats.

Two tools have been created to investigate these marine habitat correlations: the correlation spreadsheet and the correlation database. These two tools contain the same correlations, and are updated at least once per year.

If you would like to suggest any changes to the correlations, contact JNCC at

The marine habitat correlations (as presented in both tools) should be cited as:

JNCC (2018) Marine Habitat Correlation Tables Version 2018.01 [Online]. [Date accessed]. Available from:


Correlation Spreadsheet

The marine habitats correlation spreadsheet allows users to translate from the EUNIS marine classification to the Marine Habitat Classification for Britain and Ireland and listed marine habitats. The user can search for and filter certain habitats. The supporting cover note provides more information about how the correlation table should be used.


In 2015, JNCC added a deep-sea section to the Marine Habitat Classification for Britain and Ireland. These deep-sea habitats differ from those in the EUNIS classification. The main correlation table in the spreadsheet shows how each EUNIS deep-sea habitat correlates with JNCC deep-sea habitats. In addition, a JNCC deep-sea habitat to listed habitat correlation table is provided in a separate tab within the spreadsheet. This provides more detail on exactly how JNCC deep-sea habitats relate to listed habitats.


Click to download the marine habitats correlation spreadsheet
(version 2.2; updated January 2018)


Correlation Database

 This tool stores marine habitat correlations in a database format and allows easy filtering and searching. It contains the same correlations as the spreadsheet version, with some additional information about habitats.

Click to download the marine habitats correlation database
(version 2.2;  updated January 2018)


IMPORTANT: note that habitat correlation tools give an indication of which biotopes may be classed as a listed habitat, but remember that additional specific criteria may apply (e.g. the habitat may have to be a certain size) so you should always check detailed listed habitat definitions to make sure.