Facies with Ficopomatus enigmaticus

Description (English)

The characteristic species of this association is the Annelid Ficopomatus enigmaticus. This polychaete, also known as Mercierella enigmatica, is a marine tubeworm that build extensive concretions formed of the mass of their calcareous tubes. From the surface of the sea to depths of 1-2 meters, the species adheres to hard substrates of all kinds and sizes, ranging from shells, reeds, piles, and quayside and dockside structures, to the hulls of ships. The species is particularly tolerant of variations in salinity, adapting to both oligohaline (low salinity) and hyperhaline (high salinity) waters. It can withstand high rates of eutrophication, and is sensitive to wave action and intense hydrodynamics. Ficopomatus reefs develop exclusively in brackish environments, where they form belts, barriers and reefs up to one metre thick and from a few dozen centimeters to several meters wide.
They may also be built in the middle of shallow brackish basins, and look like large mushrooms adhering to fragments of hard substrates (shells, branches, rocks, reeds, etc.), sometimes reaching the surface of the water. They may extend for hundreds of square metres and are produced by many generations of tubeworms all growing attached to one others.

Source: EUNIS habitat classification

Quick facts

EUNIS habitat type code MB2531
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

Invertebrates Ficopomatus enigmaticus
Species scientific name English common name Species group
Ficopomatus enigmaticus Invertebrates

Other classifications

Classification Code Habitat type name Relationship type
EUNIS Habitat Classification 2007 (revised descriptions 2012) A5.529 Facies with Ficopomatus enigmaticus same
For relation to plant communities (syntaxa), see Vegetation types

History

Classification Code Habitat type name Relationship type Comment
EUNIS Habitat Classification 200410 A5.529 Facies with Ficopomatus enigmaticus same
EUNIS Habitat Classification 200308 A4.415 Facies with Ficopomatus enigmaticus same
EUNIS Habitat Classification 200202 A4.415 Facies with Ficopomatus enigmaticus same
EUNIS Habitat Classification 199910 A4.415 Facies with Ficopomatus enigmaticus same
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