EUNIS habitat classification 2017 > M - Marine benthic habitats > MA6 - Littoral mud > MA62 - Atlantic littoral mud > MA622 - Faunal communities of variable salinity Atlantic littoral mud > MA6224 - Hediste diversicolor and Limecola balthica in Atlantic littoral sandy mud

Hediste diversicolor and Limecola balthica in Atlantic littoral sandy mud

Description (English)

Mainly mid and lower shore sandy mud or mud in lower estuaries, sheltered bays and marine inlets, often subject to variable salinity. The main characterising species are the ragworm Hediste diversicolor, the baltic tellin Limecola balthica (Macoma balthica), and the oligochaetes Tubificoides benedii and T. pseudogaster. Further polychaetes that are often common or abundant include Pygospio elegans, Streblospio shrubsolii, Tharyx killariensis, Aphelochaeta marioni, Capitella capitata and Manayunkia aestuarina. The oligochaete Heterochaeta costata and the mud shrimp Corophium volutator may be abundant. The spire shell Hydrobia ulvae is often common. Other species which occur in a significant proportion of samples include the polychaetes Eteone longa and Nephtys hombergii, and bivalves such as the cockle Cerastoderma edule and Abra tenuis. The sand gaper Mya arenaria is superabundant in about a quarter of the samples for this biotope. M. arenaria is probably present in a higher proportion of areas of this biotope, but may be missed in core samples due to its size.
Situation: This unit may occur on the mid/lower shore of lower estuarine shores, with units MA5-253 or MA5-251 on the upper shore. MA6-225, MA6-2271, MB6-253, and MA6-2272 may be present on the same shore.
Temporal variation: Enteromorpha spp. and Ulva lactuca may form mats on the surface of the mud during the summer months, particularly in areas of nutrient enrichmnent.

Source: EUNIS habitat classification

Quick facts

EUNIS habitat type code MA6224
Relation to Resolution 4 habitat type (used for designation of Emerald sites)

Vegetation types

Relation to vegetation types (syntaxa)

Not available

Species mentioned in habitat description

Algae Ulva lactuca
Invertebrates Abra tenuis
Invertebrates Aphelochaeta marioni
Invertebrates Capitella capitata
Invertebrates Cerastoderma edule
Invertebrates Corophium volutator
Invertebrates Eteone longa
Invertebrates Heterochaeta costata
Invertebrates Hydrobia ulvae
Invertebrates Macoma balthica
Invertebrates Manayunkia aestuarina
Invertebrates Mya arenaria
Invertebrates Nephtys hombergii
Invertebrates Pygospio elegans
Invertebrates Streblospio shrubsolii
Invertebrates Tubificoides benedii
Species scientific name English common name Species group
Ulva lactuca Algae
Abra tenuis Invertebrates
Aphelochaeta marioni Invertebrates
Capitella capitata Invertebrates
Cerastoderma edule Invertebrates
Corophium volutator Invertebrates
Eteone longa Invertebrates
Heterochaeta costata Invertebrates
Hydrobia ulvae Invertebrates
Macoma balthica Invertebrates
Manayunkia aestuarina Invertebrates
Mya arenaria Invertebrates
Nephtys hombergii Invertebrates
Pygospio elegans Invertebrates
Streblospio shrubsolii Invertebrates
Tubificoides benedii Invertebrates

Other classifications

Classification Code Habitat type name Relationship type
EUNIS Habitat Classification 2007 (revised descriptions 2012) A2.312 Hediste diversicolor and Macoma balthica in littoral sandy mud same
For relation to plant communities (syntaxa), see Vegetation types

History

Classification Code Habitat type name Relationship type Comment
EUNIS Habitat Classification 200410 A2.312 Hediste diversicolor and Macoma balthica in littoral sandy mud same
EUNIS Habitat Classification 200202 A2.361 Hediste diversicolor and Macoma balthica in sandy mud shores same
EUNIS Habitat Classification 199910 A2.311 Hediste diversicolor and Macoma balthica in sandy mud shores same
MNCR BioMar 97.06 (Britain & Ireland) LMU.SMu.HedMac Hediste diversicolor and Macoma balthica in sandy mud shores same
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