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Marine Habitat Classification


Description of biotope or habitat type

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   Sublittoral mussel beds (on sublittoral sediment)


Habitat (physical) description

Salinity Full (30-35 ppt)
Wave exposure Moderately exposed, Sheltered, Very sheltered, Extremely sheltered
Tidal streams Strong (3-6 kn), Moderately strong (1-3 kn), Weak (>1 kn), Very weak (negligible)
Substratum Muddy sand, sandy muds, gravel and pebbles
Zone Infralittoral - lower, Circalittoral
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 SS.SBR.SMus Sublittoral mussel beds (on sublittoral sediment)

  • 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

Sublittoral mussel beds comprised of either the horse mussel Modiolus modiolus or the common mussel Mytilus edulis. These communities may be sublittoral extensions of littoral reefs or exist independently. Found in a variety of habitats ranging from sheltered estuaries and marine inlets to open coasts and offshore areas they may occupy a range of substrata, although due to the stabilising effect such communities have on the substratum muddy mixed sediments are typical. A diverse range of epibiota and infauna often exists in these communities.

Situation

No situation data available.

Temporal variation

No temporal data available.

Characterising Species

Taxon Relative importance of taxon for defining this community (%) Typical abundance - SACFOR scale % of core records where taxon was recorded
Anthozoa 1 Abundant 21-40 %
Alcyonium digitatum 2 Occasional 21-40 %
Urticina felina 1 Occasional 21-40 %
Turbellaria 2 Frequent 21-40 %
Nemertea 7 Abundant 61-80 %
Harmothoe imbricata 1 Super abundant 21-40 %
Harmothoe impar 3 Abundant 21-40 %
Eteone longa 2 Common 21-40 %
Kefersteinia cirrata 2 Super abundant 21-40 %
Scoloplos armiger 1 Abundant 21-40 %
Capitella capitata 2 Common 21-40 %
Heteromastus filiformis 2 Common 21-40 %
Pomatoceros 2 Frequent 21-40 %
Pomatoceros triqueter 2 Abundant 21-40 %
Pomatoceros triqueter 3 Frequent 21-40 %
Oligochaeta 10 Abundant 21-40 %
Cirripedia 2 Common 21-40 %
Balanus balanus 1 Occasional 21-40 %
Balanus crenatus 2 Frequent 21-40 %
Gammarus salinus 8 Super abundant 21-40 %
Pagurus bernhardus 6 Occasional 61-80 %
Hyas araneus 2 Occasional 21-40 %
Liocarcinus depurator 1 Occasional 21-40 %
Gibbula cineraria 1 Occasional 21-40 %
Nucella lapillus 1 Common 21-40 %
Buccinum undatum 4 Occasional 41-60 %
Mytilus edulis 16 Super abundant 21-40 %
Modiolus modiolus 20 Abundant 81-100 %
Aequipecten opercularis 3 Frequent 21-40 %
Antedon bifida 1 Occasional 21-40 %
Crossaster papposus 2 Rare 41-60 %
Asterias rubens 8 Occasional 61-80 %
Ophiothrix fragilis 10 Frequent 61-80 %
Ophiocomina nigra 2 Frequent 21-40 %
Echinus esculentus 6 Occasional 61-80 %
Corella parallelogramma 1 Occasional 21-40 %
Dendrodoa grossularia 1 Occasional 21-40 %
Corallinaceae 2 Frequent 21-40 %
Phycodrys rubens 2 Frequent 21-40 %

Similar biotopes

Not applicable or unknown.

Biotope history

Classification Habitat code
6.95 LRK.RED

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