Skip to Content

Marine Habitat Classification


Description of biotope or habitat type

To understand more about what this page is describing, see How to use the classification. See also How to cite.

   Laminaria hyperborea on tide-swept infralittoral mixed substrata


Habitat (physical) description

Salinity Full (30-35 ppt)
Wave exposure Exposed, Moderately exposed, Sheltered
Tidal streams Strong (3-6 kn), Moderately strong (1-3 kn), Weak (>1 kn)
Substratum Boulders, cobbles, pebbles and gravel
Zone Infralittoral
Depth Band 0-5 m, 5-10 m, 10-20 m, 20-30 m
Other Features

Download comparative physical and biological data. The comparative tables enable a rapid comparison of the species composition and principal physical characteristics between a given set of biotopes.

Distribution of habitat IR.MIR.KR.LhypTX <I>Laminaria hyperborea</I> on tide-swept infralittoral mixed substrata

  • Records used to define the biotope (core records)
  • Other records assigned to this biotope, marked as 'certain'
  • Other records assigned to this biotope, marked as 'uncertain'
  • Predicted extent of the level 3 (for sublittoral rock & deep sea) or 4 (for sublittoral sediment) habitat

Point data based on records in the UK Marine Recorder Snapshot. Predicted habitat extent is from UKSeaMap.

Description

Wave-exposed through to wave-sheltered, tide-swept infralittoral mixed substrata with Laminaria hyperborea forest/park and other kelp species such as Laminaria saccharina. The rich under-storey and stipe flora is characterised by foliose seaweeds including the brown algae Dictyota dichotoma. The kelp stipes support epiphytes such as Cryptopleura ramosa, Callophyllis laciniata and Phycodrys rubens. At some sites, instead of being covered by red seaweeds, the kelp stipes are heavily encrusted by the ascidians Botryllus schlosseri and the bryozoan Alcyonidium diaphanum. Epilithic seaweeds such as Desmerestia aculeata, Odonthalia dentate, Delesseria sanguinea, Plocamium cartilagineum, Callophyllis laciniata, and crustose seaweeds commonly occur beneath the kelp. The kelp fronds are often covered with growths of the hydroid Obelia geniculata or the bryozoan Membranipora membranacea. On the rock surface, a rich fauna comprising anthozoans such as Alcyonium digitatum and Urticina felina, colonial ascidians such as Clavelina lepadiformis and the calcareous tubeworm Pomatoceros triqueter occurs. More mobile species include the gastropods Gibulla cineria and Calliostoma zizyphinum, the crab Cancer pagurus and the echinoderms Crossaster papposus, Henricia oculata, Asterias rubens and Echinus esculentus. Two variants are described; tide-swept kelp forest on upper infralittoral mixed substrata (LhypTX.Ft) and tide-swept kelp park on lower infralittoral mixed substrata (LhypTX.Pk).

Situation

No situation data available.

Temporal variation

No temporal variation data available.

Characterising Species

Taxon Relative importance of taxon for defining this community (%) Typical abundance - SACFOR scale % of core records where taxon was recorded
Obelia geniculata 1 21-40 %
Alcyonium digitatum 1 41-60 %
Urticina felina 1 Rare 41-60 %
Pomatoceros triqueter 2 41-60 %
Cancer pagurus 2 41-60 %
Gibbula cineraria 2 41-60 %
Calliostoma zizyphinum 4 61-80 %
Alcyonidium diaphanum 2 41-60 %
Membranipora membranacea 1 21-40 %
Crossaster papposus 1 41-60 %
Henricia oculata 1 21-40 %
Asterias rubens 4 61-80 %
Echinus esculentus 5 61-80 %
Clavelina lepadiformis 1 21-40 %
Botryllus schlosseri 2 41-60 %
Lithophyllum 2 41-60 %
Callophyllis laciniata 2 41-60 %
Plocamium cartilagineum 4 61-80 %
Cryptopleura ramosa 2 41-60 %
Delesseria sanguinea 4 61-80 %
Phycodrys rubens 3 61-80 %
Odonthalia dentata 2 41-60 %
Dictyota dichotoma 2 41-60 %
Desmarestia aculeata 1 21-40 %
Laminaria hyperborea 6 81-100 %

Similar biotopes

IR.MIR.KR.LhypT
Found under similar wave exposure and tidal stream conditions, but on bedrock and boulder substratum.


Back to top