Sargassum muticum in eulittoral rockpools
|Within Vocab||Marine Habitat Classification for Britain and Ireland Version 97.06|
|Definition||The non-native brown alga Sargassum muticum has spread extensively around the south-west coast of Britain since its introduction to UK waters in the early 1970s. It is an opportunistic alga which can dominate rockpools in the south-west, often to the exclusion of other species which would otherwise occupy this niche (Laminaria spp. and fucoids). Where S. muticum dominates shallow to medium-depth pools, this biotope (FK.Sar) should be recorded. At low tide the swards of Sargassum thalli lie flat on the water surface, thereby reducing the illumination available to red algae (Gelidium spp., Dumontia contorta, and Corallina officinalis) which subsequently occur in low abundances. The fauna that occur are common to the eulittoral coralline pools (see Cor) and include littorinids, Patella and the anemone Actinia equina. Where sediment occurs in the pool the red algae Polyides rotundus and Furcellaria lumbricalis can also be found.|
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