Eurydice pulchra in Atlantic littoral mobile sand
Well-draining beaches of medium- to fine-grained mobile sand, often (but not always) well sorted. Occasionally, a small fraction of coarse sand may be present. The biotope generally occurs on exposed open coasts, but sometimes in estuarine conditions, supporting populations of the isopod Eurydice pulchra and burrowing amphipods which frequently include Bathyporeia pilosa and Haustorius arenarius. The degree of drainage appears to be a critical factor in determining the presence of polychaetes, with only Scolelepis squamata capable of tolerating the well-drained sediments of this biotope. This biotope has two facies: drying upper and mid shore sands, and highly mobile lower shore and shallow sublittoral sand bars. Where this biotope occurs in estuarine conditions, H. arenarius is often highly abundant.
Situation:This unit may occur on the mid and upper shore together with unit MA5-2331, below MA6-2273, or above MA5-2333 and the MA5-241 communities. Under more exposed, open conditions, this unit may be restricted to the lower part of the shore, with MA6-2273, barren sand (MA5-231) or barren shingle (MA3-211) on the upper shore. Unit MA5-211 may occur where driftlines of wracks or other debris accumulate on the upper shore.
Temporal variation: Winter storms may reduce the number of or temporarily remove macroinvertebrates from exposed sandy beaches, with the sediment becoming re-colonised during the summer months.
Source: EUNIS habitat classification
|EUNIS habitat type||code MA52332|
|Relation to||Resolution 4 habitat type (used for designation of Emerald sites)|
Relation to other habitat types mentioned in legal instruments
Relation to vegetation types (syntaxa)Not available
Species mentioned in habitat description
|Species scientific name||English common name||Species group|
|Classification||Code||Habitat type name||Relationship type|
|EUNIS Habitat Classification 2007 (revised descriptions 2012)||A2.2232||Eurydice pulchra in littoral mobile sand||same|
|Classification||Code||Habitat type name||Relationship type||Comment|
|EUNIS Habitat Classification 200410||A2.2232||Eurydice pulchra in littoral mobile sand||same|
|EUNIS Habitat Classification 200202||A2.243||Burrowing amphipods and Eurydice pulchra in well-drained clean sand shores||same|
|EUNIS Habitat Classification 199910||A2.213||Burrowing amphipods and Eurydice pulchra in well-drained clean sand shores||same|
|MNCR BioMar 97.06 (Britain & Ireland)||LGS.S.AEur||Burrowing amphipods and Eurydice pulchra in well-drained clean sand shores||same|