Balanus crenatus, Halichondria panicea and Alcyonidium diaphanum on extremely tide-swept sheltered circalittoral rock
|Marine Habitat Classification for Britain and Ireland Version 97.06
|Strong tides of variable to low salinity water run through the narrows such as parts of the Menai Strait and the Falls of Lora in Loch Etive with dense Balanus crenatus covering most surfaces. Few other species are present other than large growths of Halichondria panicea a few tufts of Tubularia indivisa and often dense Alcyonidium diaphanum (see CuSH). In these extreme conditions species richness is generally low and limited to those species which can tolerate variable salinity and hang on to the substratum (hence this biotope often has shore species such as Nucella lapillus and Carcinus maenas). In slightly less strong tides and/or less variable salinity dense Tubularia indivisa (ECR.BalTub) and/or dense cushions of sponge (ECR.CuSH) develops.
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