EUNIS habitat classification 2017 > M - Marine benthic habitats > MB1 - Infralittoral rock > MB12 - Atlantic infralittoral rock > MB127 - Communities of surge gullies and caves on Atlantic infralittoral rock > MB1274 - Dendrodoa grossularia and Clathrina coriacea on wave-surged vertical Atlantic infralittoral rock

Dendrodoa grossularia and Clathrina coriacea on wave-surged vertical Atlantic infralittoral rock

Quick facts

EUNIS habitat type code MB1274
Relation to Resolution 4 habitat type (used for designation of Emerald sites)

Description (English)

Vertical or overhanging infralittoral rock subject to considerable wave-surge, especially in the middle or back of caves but also in gullies and tunnels, and dominated by dense sheets of the ascidian Dendrodoa grossularia, together with variable quantities of the sponge Clathrina coriacea. At some sites D. grossularia forms continuous sheets, with few other species present. Other sponges such as Esperiopsis fucorum, Pachymatisma johnstonia, Leucosolenia botryoides, Scypha ciliata and Halichondria panicea regularly occur in this biotope, though generally at low abundance. Other ascidians, especially Polyclinum aurantium, Diplosoma spp. and other didemnids may also occur, though only P. aurantium is ever as abundant as D. grossularia. Being characteristically found in the middle or towards the backs of the caves mean that there is generally insufficient light to support any foliose seaweeds, although encrusting coralline algae are not uncommon. More scoured areas may also contain the anemone Urticina felina, whilst Sagartia elegans is often present in low numbers. Mobile fauna are often limited to the starfish Asterias rubens and Henricia spp., the brittlestar Ophiopholis aculeata and crabs Cancer pagurus and Necora puber. The barnacle Balanus crenatus can occur, usually in low densities.
Situation: Where this biotope develops in a cave or tunnel it can occur anywhere from the entrance to the rear of the system. Typically, it will give way to sponge crust or barnacle and encrusting tubeworm communities at the rear of the cave, where surge forces are amplified (units MB1-275 or MB1-2761). The vertical rock below this unit, abutting the cave/gully floor, is likely to be severely scoured, colonised by the robust MB1-2761 biotope. The cave or gully floor is generally scoured clean by boulders and/or cobbles (MB1-2762). The cave or gully entrance has more available light for algal growth so dense foliose seaweeds usually dominate the rock walls at the entrance, abutting the D. grossularia - C. coriacea zone further into the cave (MB1-271). This dense seaweed growth may also extend to the upward-facing surfaces of boulders around the entrance. Where this unit occurs in a gully situation, the rock tends to be colonised by dense Alaria esculenta in the sublittoral fringe (MB1-211) or by Laminaria hyperborea forest in the shallow infralittoral (MB1-2151).

Source: EUNIS habitat classification

Vegetation types

Relation to vegetation types (syntaxa)

Not available

Species mentioned in habitat description

Algae Alaria esculenta
Algae Laminaria hyperborea
Invertebrates Balanus crenatus
Invertebrates Cancer pagurus
Invertebrates Clathrina coriacea
Invertebrates Dendrodoa grossularia
Invertebrates Esperiopsis fucorum
Invertebrates Halichondria panicea
Invertebrates Leucosolenia botryoides
Invertebrates Necora puber
Invertebrates Ophiopholis aculeata
Invertebrates Pachymatisma johnstonia
Invertebrates Polyclinum aurantium
Invertebrates Sagartia elegans
Invertebrates Urticina felina
Species scientific name English common name Species group
Alaria esculenta Algae
Laminaria hyperborea Algae
Balanus crenatus Invertebrates
Cancer pagurus Invertebrates
Clathrina coriacea Invertebrates
Dendrodoa grossularia Invertebrates
Esperiopsis fucorum Invertebrates
Halichondria panicea Invertebrates
Leucosolenia botryoides Invertebrates
Necora puber Invertebrates
Ophiopholis aculeata Invertebrates
Pachymatisma johnstonia Invertebrates
Polyclinum aurantium Invertebrates
Sagartia elegans Invertebrates
Urticina felina Invertebrates

Other classifications

Classification Code Habitat type name Relationship type
EUNIS Habitat Classification 2007 (revised descriptions 2012) A3.714 Dendrodoa grossularia and Clathrina coriacea on wave-surged vertical infralittoral rock same
For relation to plant communities (syntaxa), see Vegetation types

History

Classification Code Habitat type name Relationship type Comment
EUNIS Habitat Classification 200410 A3.714 Dendrodoa grossularia and Clathrina coriacea on wave-surged vertical infralittoral rock same
EUNIS Habitat Classification 200308 A3.4131 Dendrodoa grossularia and Clathrina coriacea on wave-surged vertical infralittoral rock same
EUNIS Habitat Classification 200202 A3.4131 Dendrodoa grossularia and Clathrina coriacea on wave-surged vertical infralittoral rock same
EUNIS Habitat Classification 199910 A3.4131 Dendrodoa grossularia and Clathrina coriacea on wave-surged vertical infralittoral rock same
MNCR BioMar 97.06 (Britain & Ireland) EIR.SG.SCAs.DenCla Dendrodoa grossularia and Clathrina coriacea on wave-surged vertical infralittoral rock same
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