I was interested to read in this question about the clearing of naval mines for D-Day in 1944. There are estimates of the frequency of the mines on the beach -- history.com says there were "4 million landmines along Normandy’s beaches", but I've not found anything on the number of mines cleared in the water.

Does any source indicate or suggest how many naval mines were cleared by the nighttime minesweeping operation?

Mine targeting at sea

Minesweeping map

  • 1
    Note, that map does on show the main minefield. It shows the transport and landing areas to the south. The main barrier is further north between 49 50'N and 50N.
    – Schwern
    Commented May 3, 2020 at 21:01

1 Answer 1


According to United States Naval Administrative History of World War II, Chapter VII - Defensive Measures - Neptune Operation, Part V - Neptune Minesweeping Operations, 552.

                          West  East    Total
Moored mines swept        91    95      186
Ground mines swept        140   109     249
Ground mines accounted    6     68      74
  for other than by
Total                     261   291     552

Ground mines, aka bottom mines, sit on the bottom in shallow water.

  • Are these figures for the US only, or for US + UK minesweeping activities? Commented May 3, 2020 at 22:22
  • @kimchilover All Allied minesweeping activities. The minesweepers were mostly British. See "B. Minesweeping Arrangements in the Assault Area" page 436 and associated footnotes 3 through 7.
    – Schwern
    Commented May 3, 2020 at 22:40
  • 1
    Thanks! Nice find. Commented May 3, 2020 at 22:46

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