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Marine Habitat Classification

Description of biotope or habitat type

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   Laminaria hyperborea park and foliose red seaweeds on tide-swept lower infralittoral mixed substrata

Physical habitat description

Salinity Full (30-35 ppt)
Wave exposure Exposed, Moderately exposed
Tidal streams Very strong (>6 kn), Strong (3-6 kn), Moderately strong (1-3 kn)
Substratum Boulders, cobbles, pebbles & gravel
Zone Infralittoral - lower
Depth Band 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.Pk <I>Laminaria hyperborea</I> park and foliose red seaweeds on tide-swept lower 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.


Exposed to moderately wave-exposed, tide-swept, Infralittoral mixed substrata with Laminaria hyperborea park characterised by an under-storey and stipe flora of foliose seaweeds such as Phycodrys rubens, Plocamium cartilagineum, Hypoglossum hypoglossoides, Kallymenia reniformis, Cryptopleura ramosa and Delesseria sanguinea. Epilithic seaweeds (Bonnemaisonia asparagoides, Metacallophyllis laciniata, Lomentaria orcadensis and Vertebrata byssoides) and crustose seaweeds commonly occur beneath the kelp. The foliose brown seaweed Dictyota dichotoma is often present as well. Amongst the red seaweeds is a fairly diverse fauna comprising sponges (Scypha ciliate), anthozoans (Alcyonium digitatum, Urticina felina and Caryophyllia smithii), hydroids (Tubularia indivisa, Halecium halecinum, Sertularia argentea and Nemertesia antennina), colonial ascidians (Botryllus schlosseri) and bryozoans such as Alcyonium diaphanum. On the rock surface, the calcareous tubeworm Spirobranchus triqueter, the crab Cancer pagurus and the gastropods Steromphala cineraria and Calliostoma zizyphinum may be found. A diverse range of echinoderms are also found in this biotope: Crossaster papposus, Henricia oculata, Asterias rubens, Echinus esculentus and Ophiothrix fragilis.


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
Laminaria hyperborea 6 81-100%
Echinus esculentus 6 81-100%
Asterias rubens 4 61-80%
Calliostoma zizyphinum 4 61-80%
Delesseria sanguinea 4 61-80%
Plocamium cartilagineum 4 61-80%
Alcyonium digitatum 3 41-60%
Alcyonidium diaphanum 2 41-60%
Metacallophyllis laciniata 2 61-80%
Cancer pagurus 2 41-60%
Caryophyllia smithii 2 41-60%
Crossaster papposus 2 41-60%
Cryptopleura ramosa 2 41-60%
Steromphala cineraria 2 Rare 41-60%
Nemertesia antennina 2 41-60%
Phycodrys rubens 2 41-60%
Spirobranchus triqueter 2 41-60%
Bonnemaisonia asparagoides 1 21-40%
Botryllus schlosseri 1 21-40%
Vertebrata byssoides 1 41-60%
Dictyota dichotoma 1 41-60%
Halecium halecinum 1 41-60%
Henricia oculata 1 41-60%
Hypoglossum hypoglossoides 1 41-60%
Kallymenia reniformis 1 41-60%
Lomentaria orcadensis 1 41-60%
Ophiothrix fragilis 1 41-60%
Sycon ciliatum 1 41-60%
Sertularia argentea 1 41-60%
Tubularia indivisa 1 41-60%
Urticina felina 1 Rare 21-40%

Similar biotopes or habitat types

Occurs over similar range of tidal streams but found on bedrock and boulders.

Occurs on similar substrata but in shallower water depths in the upper infralittoral kelp forest zone.

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