Welcome to the website of the DC-UK project
The DC-UK project is designed specifically to help conserve the offshore marine natural heritage of the United Kingdom. The issues of conservation in the marine environment are many and varied but by tackling three central elements - biodiversity, management policy and public awareness - DC-UK will provide information on threats to offshore biodiversity, practical case studies to help future conservation management and will disseminate this information to a wider public.
It is only in the last few years that the threat posed by deep-water trawling to seabed-dwelling animal communities has become apparent. Areas of ancient cold-water coral reef show the scars of trawling (Hall-Spencer et al. 2002) and along the UK continental margin trawl marks can be seen at depths of over 1km (Roberts et al. 2000). DC-UK will investigate the biodiversity of cold-water coral reefs in the UK, secure valuable historic video from the Rockall Bank before it was trawled, develop the methods to manage deep-water trawling and raise awareness of the diverse deep-sea environment of the UK by making scientific survey results readily accessible.