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Marine Habitat Classification


Description of biotope or habitat type

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   Pelvetia canaliculata and barnacles on moderately exposed littoral fringe rock


Habitat (physical) description

Salinity Full (30-35 ppt)
Wave exposure Exposed, Moderately exposed
Tidal streams
Substratum Bedrock; boulders; cobbles
Zone Littoral fringe - lower
Depth Band Upper shore
Other Features Also on steep sheltered bedrock

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 LR.MLR.BF.PelB <I>Pelvetia canaliculata</I> and barnacles on moderately exposed littoral fringe rock

  • 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'

Point data based on records in the UK Marine Recorder Snapshot.

Description

Exposed to moderately exposed steep, lower littoral fringe rock and mixed substrata characterised by the wrack Pelvetia canaliculata and sparse barnacles Chthamalus montagui and Semibalanus balanoides. On sheltered shores the biotope is restricted to vertical faces. The limpet Patella vulgata and the wrack Fucus spiralis are usually present as well. P. canaliculata typically overgrows a crust of the black lichen Verrucaria maura or on occasion Verrucaria mucosa, in contrast to the red crust Hildenbrandia rubra on very sheltered shores. The winkle Littorina saxatilis is frequently present underneath the fronds of P. canaliculata. Some geographical variation are present and southern and western shores are typically characterised by the barnacle C. montagui or Chthamalus stellatus while S. balanoides dominates on northern and eastern shores. On mixed substrata the barnacle Elminius modestus may be present.

Situation

PelB is generally found below the V. maura and barnacle zone (Ver.B; Ver.Ver). On exposed shores PelB is found above the biotope dominated by F. spiralis (Fspi) or the mussel Mytilus edulis and barnacles biotope (MytB) or the barnacles and P. vulgata biotopes (Sem). In addition, patches of lichen Lichina pygmaea with the barnacle Chthamalus montagui (Cht.Lpyg) may also occur at the same level or above this biotope, particularly on southern shores. On sheltered to extremely sheltered shores this biotope is limited to very steep or vertical faces.

Temporal variation

Unknown.

Characterising Species

Taxon Relative importance of taxon for defining this community (%) Typical abundance - SACFOR scale % of core records where taxon was recorded
Chthamalus montagui 3 Frequent 41-60 %
Semibalanus balanoides 9 Occasional 61-80 %
Patella vulgata 19 Occasional 41-60 %
Littorina saxatilis 4 Frequent 61-80 %
Fucus spiralis 3 Occasional 41-60 %
Pelvetia canaliculata 33 Common 81-100 %
Verrucaria maura 17 Common 61-80 %
Verrucaria mucosa 2 Frequent 21-40 %

Similar biotopes

LR.LLR.F.Pel
Occurs in the lower littoral fringe on more sheltered shores, where upward facing rock allows a more dense P. canaliculata population to flourish. It has a lower species diversity and it lacks species such as the barnacles S. balanoides, C. montagui and the winkle Melarhaphe neritoides.

LR.LLR.F.Fspi
Occurs slightly lower on the shore and is dominated by F. spiralis (Common), whilst P. canaliculata is usually present in low abundance or absent.

Biotope history

Classification Habitat code
6.95 LRK.PEL in part

Photos

LR.MLR.BF.PelB Pelvetia canaliculata and barnacles on moderately exposed littoral fringe rock, Cornwall. Kate Northen © JNCC
LR.MLR.BF.PelB Pelvetia canaliculata and barnacles on moderately exposed littoral fringe rock, Cornwall. Kate Northen © JNCC
LR.MLR.BF.PelB Pelvetia canaliculata and barnacles on moderately exposed littoral fringe rock, Crackington Hove, cornwall. Kate Northen © JNCC
LR.MLR.BF.PelB Pelvetia canaliculata and barnacles on moderately exposed littoral fringe rock, Crackington Hove, cornwall. Kate Northen © JNCC

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