Tubificoides spp. in reduced salinity infralittoral muddy sediment
|Marine Habitat Classification for Britain and Ireland Version 97.06
|Reduced salinity muddy sediments characterised by oligochaetes, particularly of the genus Tubificoides. The abundance of the oligochaetes may vary by several orders of magnitude but very few other species will be present. This biotope is found towards the edges of tidal channels in estuaries where current velocities allow deposition of silt and the establishment of an infaunal community. Organic loading and poor water-exchange within the sediment lead to anoxic conditions which may explain the low species richness within this biotope. The biotope may occur downstream of IMU.LimTtub, differentiated by the absence of the freshwater species, and adjacent to more mobile and sandier biotopes in the tidal channels. A similar biotope IMU.CapTub can be separated from IMU.Tub by the dominance of the polychaete Capitella capitata. More mobile muds which occur in areas with an extremely high suspended particulate component to the water column, IMU.MobMud, may contain a very similar suite of species to IMU.Tub and can only positively be separated by a description of the sediment characteristics in the field.
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