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ImportanceIn the context of marine natural heritage: species or biotopes which are rare or very restricted in their distribution; species or biotopes that are in decline or have been; species or biotopes where a country has a high proportion of the regional or world population or extent; species that are keystone in a biotope by providing a habitat for other species; biotopes with a particularly high species richness; locations or biotopes that are particularly good or extensive representatives of their type. Species will also be 'important' if they are listed for protection on statutes, directives and conventions.
InfaunaBenthic animals which live within the seabed.
Integrated Coastal Zone Management (ICZM)The co-ordination of all activities, regulatory and management functions to safeguard all natural resources and processes found in and affecting the coastal zone (Anon, 2001).
Interest FeatureDefined in the JNCC common standards framework as "A habitat, habitat matrix, geomorphological or geological exposure, a species or species community or assemblage which is the reason for notification of the site under the appropriate selection guidelines or, in the case of Natura 2000 and Ramsar areas, the features for which the site will be designated". The interest features of an SAC are the habitat types and species listed in Annexes I and II of the Habitats Directive, for which the site is selected.
International Importance1) in biotopes or areas (conservation assessment) -biotopes or areas which are highly rated in a coastal sector (q.v.) are considered of international importance if they are one of the best examples or only examples present in the north-east Atlantic (North Cape, Norway to Gibraltar). This was, until 1995, defined for communities as being: "Communities which are outstandingly good examples of their type in the north-east Atlantic. Communities recorded at only a very few locations in the north-east Atlantic" (Hiscock & Mitchell 1989). Cf. 'international importance: species', 'local importance', 'national importance', 'regional importance' (biotopes or areas and species). 2) In species (conservation assessment) -species which are recorded at only a very few locations in the north-eastern Atlantic. Species recorded in higher abundance in the area under consideration than anywhere else in the north-eastern Atlantic, or where the area is one of only a few locations where large quantities are recorded (Davies et al., 1990, based on Hiscock & Mitchell, 1989). Cf. 'international importance: biotopes or areas', 'local importance', 'national importance', 'regional importance' (biotopes or areas and species).
IntertidalThe zone between the highest and lowest tides (from Lincoln et al., 1998).


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