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Marine Habitat Classification


4 results for 'IR.MIR.KR.Ldig'

   IR.MIR.KR.Ldig.Ldig  Laminaria digitata on moderately exposed sublittoral fringe bedrock

Exposed to sheltered sublittoral fringe bedrock dominated by a dense canopy of Laminaria digitata, often with a wide range of filamentous and foliose red seaweeds beneath. The most frequently occurring red seaweeds are Palmaria palmata, Corallina officinalis, Mastocarpus stellatus, Chondrus crispus, Lomentaria articulata and Membranoptera alata. Generally the rocky substratum is covered by encrusting coralline algae, on which occasional limpets Patella vulgata and topshells Steromphala cineraria graze. A wide variety of fauna occurs, some of the most commonly occurring species being the sponge Halichondria panicea and the tube-building polychaete Spirobranchus triqueter. Kelp holdfasts provide a refuge for a varied assemblage of species such as sponges and the limpet Patella pellucida, while encrusting bryozoans such as Electra pilosa more often are found on the fronds of foliose red seaweeds. Solitary ascidians may be locally abundant where overhanging or vertical rock occurs, while the hydroid Dynamena pumila can be abundant on Fucus serratus and Laminaria sp. fronds. On exposed, wave-surged shores, the robust red seaweeds M. stellatus, C. crispus and C. officinalis can form a dense turf beneath the kelp along with the occasional green seaweed Ulva lactuca. Similarly on such shores the mussel Mytilus edulis can occur in extremely dense aggregations on the rock, beneath the kelp canopy.

   IR.MIR.KR.Ldig  Laminaria digitata on moderately exposed sublittoral fringe rock

Exposed to moderately exposed sublittoral fringe rock characterised by the kelp Laminaria digitata with coralline crusts covering the rock beneath the kelp canopy. Foliose red seaweeds such as Palmaria palmata, Membranoptera alata, Chondrus crispus and Mastocarpus stellatus are often present along with the calcareous Corallina officinalis. The brown seaweed Fucus serratus and the green seaweeds Cladophora rupestris and Ulva lactuca can be present as well. The sponge Halichondria panicea can be found among the kelp holdfasts or underneath overhangs. Also present on the rock are the tube-building polychaete Spirobranchus triqueter, the gastropods Patella vulgata and Steromphala cineraria. The bryozoan Electra pilosa can form colonies on especially C. crispus, M. stellatus and F. serratus while the hydroid Dynanema pumila are more common on the kelp. Three variants of this biotope are described: L. digitata forest on rocky shores (Ldig.Ldig). L. digitata on boulder shores (Ldig.Bo) and soft rock supporting L. digitata, such as the chalk found in south-east England (Ldig.Pid). For L. digitata in sheltered, tide-swept conditions see LdigT.

   IR.MIR.KR.Ldig.Pid  Laminaria digitata and piddocks on sublittoral fringe soft rock

Soft rock, such as chalk, in the sublittoral fringe characterised by Laminaria digitata and rock-boring animals such as piddocks Barnea candida and Pholas dactylus, the bivalve Hiatella arctica and worms Polydora spp. Beneath the kelp forest, a wide variety of foliose red seaweeds occur such as Palmaria palmata, Chondrus crispus, Membranoptera alata and Halurus flosculosus. Filamentous red seaweeds often present are Vertebrata fucoides and Ceramium nodulosum, while coralline crusts cover available rock surface. The bryozoan Membranipora membranacea and the hydroid Dynanema pumila can form colonies on the kelp fronds, while the bryozoan Electra pilosa more often occur on the foliose red seaweeds. Empty piddock burrows are often colonised by the polychaete Sabellaria spinulosa or in more shaded areas the sponges Halichondria panicea and Hymeniacidon perlevis. The undersides of small chalk boulders are colonised by encrusting bryozoans, colonial ascidians and the tube-building polychaete Spirobranchus lamarcki. The boulders and any crevices within the chalk provide a refuge for small crustaceans such as Carcinus maenas, the mussel Mytilus edulis or the barnacle Semibalanus balanoides. The echinoderm Asterias rubens is present as well.

   IR.MIR.KR.Ldig.Bo  Laminaria digitata and under-boulder fauna on sublittoral fringe boulders

This Laminaria digitata biotope is found predominantly on moderately exposed boulder shores and occasionally also on exposed or sheltered shores. Upper surfaces of the boulders are colonised by dense L. digitata though other kelp such as Laminaria hyperborea and Saccharina latissima or the wrack Fucus serratus can be present at lower abundance. The kelp fronds can be colonised by the bryozoan Membranipora membranacea. Beneath the kelp canopy are a variety of red seaweeds such as Mastocarpus stellatus, Chondrus crispus, Palmaria palmata, Membranoptera alata, Corallina officinalis and coralline crusts. Green seaweeds include Cladophora rupestris and Ulva lactuca. Where space is available beneath the boulders (i.e. they are not buried in sediment) there may be a rich assemblage of animals. Characteristic species include the crabs Porcellana platycheles, Pisidia longicornis and juvenile Cancer pagurus. Also present beneath the boulders are often high densities of the barnacle Balanus crenatus, the tube-building polychaete Spirobranchus triqueter, spirorbid worms, the polychaete Harmotho??? sp., gammarid amphipods and a few gastropods such as Steromphala cineraria. The encrusting bryozoans Electra pilosa and Oshurkovia littoralis and encrusting colonies of the sponges Halichondria panicea and Halisarca dujardinii are also typical of this habitat. The richest examples also contain a variety of echinoderms such as Asterias rubens, colonial ascidians such as Botryllus schlosseri and small hydroids.
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