Burrowing amphipods Pontocrates spp. and Bathyporeia spp. in lower shore clean sand
|Marine Habitat Classification for Britain and Ireland Version 97.06
|Lower shore clean sand on wave-exposed or moderately wave-exposed coasts support a community of burrowing amphipods and polychaetes. Amphipods make up the greater part of the community and are typically dominated by Pontocrates altamarinus, P. arenarius, Bathyporeia elegans, B. pelagica, B. pilosa the isopod Eurydice pulchra and the cumacean Cumopsis goodsiri. Polychaetes are dominated by Nephtys cirrosa, Paraonis fulgens and Scolelepis squamata. Angulus tenuis is also frequently found in this biotope. Although the characterising species are not found very frequently, they are faithful to this biotope. The medium and fine sand remains damp throughout the tidal cycle and contains little organic matter. The presence of polychaetes may be seen as coloured burrows running down from the surface of the sediment. The sediment is often rippled and typically lacks an anoxic black sub-surface layer. LGS.AP.Pon is distinguished from LGS.AP.P as being less stable sediment with a community dominated by amphipods, particularly Pontocrates altamarinus, Bathyporeia elegans and Cumopsis goodsiri or the bivalve Angulus tenuis. This community differs from the community of burrowing amphipods (LGS.AEur) in its greater variety of polychaete and amphipod species. More stable sediment, found in sandy inlets or extensive coastal sandflats are considered to be LMS.PCer or LMS.MacAre, depending upon the community present.
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