Ephemeral red seaweeds and kelps on tide-swept mobile infralittoral cobbles
|Marine Habitat Classification for Britain and Ireland Version 97.06
|Tide-swept infralittoral cobbles and pebbles which are highly mobile, create an environment that is difficult for many algae to survive in. Foliose and filamentous seaweeds with an encrusting phase in their life history, or those that are able to withstand rolling of the substratum and scouring can form dense turfs of seaweed. Characteristic species include Schmitzia spp., Lomentaria orcadensis, Halarachnion ligulatum and Taonia atomaria. In addition, ephemeral algae grow rapidly in periods of relative stability. Scattered Laminaria and Desmarestia plants may also be present on the more stable substrata. Some areas of cobbles may be quite barren, dominated only by encrusting coralline algae and brittlestars. The faunal component of this biotope maybe relatively sparse. Turfs of hydroids (Nemertesia spp.) and bryozoans (Crisia spp. and Bugula spp.) are the major components.
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