Borkum Reef Ground

The Borkum Reef Ground lies in the south-west of the German EEZ. With 625 km2 it is a comparatively small but very diverse marine protected area. It is characterized by a large sandbank that covers around 80% of the area, with many dispersed reef areas (BfN, 2008c)⁠. The Borkum Reef Ground stretches from 18 m to 33 m depth and has a large substrate and habitat diversity and is populated by small-scale benthic communities such as the Fabulina fabula or the Goniadella-Spisula communities  (BfN, 2008c; Sell et al., 2011)⁠.

The ecological relevance of this marine protected area is based on the high biodiversity supported by its habitat complexity.165 species have been identified in the macrozoobenthos, many of which are threatened species (www.bfn.de, „Das Schutzgebiet Borkum-Riffgrund“). 

Sightings of harbour porpoises with calves have become more common. In additon, harbour and grey seals  frequently use the Borkum Reef Ground as foraging area and pass through on their migratory routes (BfN, 2008c)⁠. Due to the many reefs distributed through out the Borkum Reef Ground, fishing pressure in the area is rather low, but a fishery exclusion will presumably have positive effects on this marine protected area, too.

References

BfN. Erhaltungsziele für das FFH-Gebiet „Sylter Außenriff “ ( DE 1209-301 ) in der deutschen AWZ der Nordsee2008a:1–22.

BfN. Erhaltungsziele für das FFH-Gebiet „Doggerbank“(DE 1003-301) in der deutschen AWZ der Nordsee 2008b:1–11.

BfN. Erhaltungsziele für das FFH-Gebiet „Borkum-Riffgrund“ (DE 2104-301) in der deutschen AWZ der Nordsee 2008c:1–19.

www.bfn.de/themen/meeresnaturschutz/nationale-meeresschutzgebiete/nordsee-awz/borkum-riffgrund.html

Sell A, Pusch C, von Dorrien C, Krause J, Schulze T, Carstensen D. Maßnahmenvorschläge für das Fischereimanagement in Natura 2000-Gebieten der deutschen AWZ der Nord- und Ostsee. 2011