|Site of Special Scientific Interest|
|Area of Search||Merseyside|
|Area||9226.3 hectares, 22,798.2 acres (92,261,000 m2)|
|Notification||1966 (Southport Sanctuary)|
1976 (Ribble Estuary)
|Designated||28 November 1985|
|Natural England website|
A large number of different species of waders and wildfowl, listed below, use the estuaries as feeding and over-wintering areas. This wide variety of bird species has led to the estuaries being officially designated as a Special Protection Area and as a Ramsar site. The Ribble Estuary has been designated a Site of Special Scientific Interest since 1966 and is now covered by Natural England's Ribble Estuary National Nature Reserve.