Fucus serratus and under-boulder fauna on lower eulittoral boulders
|Within Vocab||Marine Habitat Classification for Britain and Ireland Version 97.06|
|Definition||This variant of the Fucus serratus biotope is found on moderately exposed to sheltered boulder shores. While the upper surfaces of the boulders are colonised by a very similar fauna and flora to Fser.Fser, the presence of the boulders increases the micro-habitat diversity which often results in a greater species richness. The shaded sides of the boulders are often colonised by a variety of red algae, including Mastocarpus stellatus, Lomentaria articulata, Osmundea pinnatifida and Corallina officinalis. The species composition on the underside of the boulders varies considerably depending on the substratum underlying the boulders. On muddy shores the fauna living under the boulders may be limited to a few burrowing worms, such as Cirratulus cirratus. Where more space is available beneath the boulders there may be a rich assemblage of animals. Characteristic mobile species include the hairy porcelain crab Porcellana platycheles, the smooth porcelain crab Pisidia longicornis and juvenile edible crabs Cancer pagurus. Also present beneath the boulders are often high densities of the barnacle Balanus crenatus, the tubeworm Pomatoceros spp., spirorbid worms and gammarid amphipods, and a few small gastropods and mussels. Encrusting bryozoans (Umbonula littoralis and Schizoporella unicornis) and encrusting colonies of the sponges Hymeniacidon perleve and Halichondria panicea are also typical of the undersides of boulders. The richest examples contain a variety of brittlestars, ascidians and small hydroids.|
|Has Current Version||1|
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