EUNIS habitat classification 2017 > M - Marine benthic habitats > MC1 - Circalittoral rock > MC12 - Atlantic circalittoral rock > MC121 - Faunal turf communities on Atlantic circalittoral rock > MC1216 - Flustra foliacea and colonial ascidians on tide-swept moderately wave-exposed Atlantic circalittoral rock > MC12161 - Polyclinum aurantium and Flustra foliacea on sand-scoured tide-swept moderately wave-exposed Atlantic circalittoral rock

Polyclinum aurantium and Flustra foliacea on sand-scoured tide-swept moderately wave-exposed Atlantic circalittoral rock

Quick facts

EUNIS habitat type code MC12161
Relation to Resolution 4 habitat type (used for designation of Emerald sites)

Description (English)

This variant is typically found on the upper face of moderately exposed, moderately tide-swept, circalittoral bedrock or boulders. Sand and silt are periodically re-suspended in the water column, resulting in scour-tolerant species being characteristic of these areas. There is a dense covering of the scour-resistant bryozoan Flustra foliacea attached to the bedrock plains and boulders. The colonial ascidian Polyclinum aurantium commonly covers the rock surface at most locations within this biotope - itself incorporating sand grains into its surface to give it the appearance of sandy rock nodules. Other ascidians that may occur in this crust are the flat, encrusting colonial Botrylloides leachi, Botryllus schlosseri and the colonial ascidian Clavelina lepadiformis, although in varying quantities at each location. A short turf of other bryozoans such as Alcyonidium diaphanum, Bugula plumosa and Bugula flabellata occur amongst the ascidians. Other species found in this biotope are the sponges Cliona celata, Leucosolenia botryoides and Scypha ciliata, the hydroids Tubularia indivisa, Nemertesia antennina, Halecium halecinum and the anthozoans Alcyonium digitatum and Urticina felina. Echinoderms which may be present include the starfish Asterias rubens, Crossaster papposus and the brittlestar Ophiothrix fragilis. Crustaceans such as the crab Cancer pagurus, the hermit crab Pagurus bernhardus and the lobster Homarus gammarus may be observed in crevices and under boulders. The palps of the polychaete Polydora spp. may be observed whilst the nudibranch Janolus cristatus may be seen preying on the hydroid/bryozoan turf. This variant is commonly found on the Northumberland coast, Flamborough Head and the Lleyn Peninsula.
Situation: As MC1-2161 tends to occur in waters with a sediment load, the resulting light penetration is reduced, meaning that kelp forests such as unit MB1-21A, normally found shallower than MC1-2161 in the infralittoral zone, are present over a narrower depth range.

Source: EUNIS habitat classification

Vegetation types

Relation to vegetation types (syntaxa)

Not available

Species mentioned in habitat description

Invertebrates Alcyonidium diaphanum
Invertebrates Alcyonium digitatum
Invertebrates Asterias rubens
Invertebrates Botrylloides leachi
Invertebrates Botryllus schlosseri
Invertebrates Bugula flabellata
Invertebrates Bugula plumosa
Invertebrates Cancer pagurus
Invertebrates Clavelina lepadiformis
Invertebrates Cliona celata
Invertebrates Crossaster papposus
Invertebrates Homarus gammarus
Invertebrates Leucosolenia botryoides
Invertebrates Nemertesia antennina
Invertebrates Ophiothrix fragilis
Invertebrates Pagurus bernhardus
Invertebrates Polyclinum aurantium
Invertebrates Tubularia indivisa
Species scientific name English common name Species group
Alcyonidium diaphanum Invertebrates
Alcyonium digitatum Invertebrates
Asterias rubens Invertebrates
Botrylloides leachi Invertebrates
Botryllus schlosseri Invertebrates
Bugula flabellata Invertebrates
Bugula plumosa Invertebrates
Cancer pagurus Invertebrates
Clavelina lepadiformis Invertebrates
Cliona celata Invertebrates
Crossaster papposus Invertebrates
Homarus gammarus Invertebrates
Leucosolenia botryoides Invertebrates
Nemertesia antennina Invertebrates
Ophiothrix fragilis Invertebrates
Pagurus bernhardus Invertebrates
Polyclinum aurantium Invertebrates
Tubularia indivisa Invertebrates

Other classifications

Classification Code Habitat type name Relationship type
EUNIS Habitat Classification 2007 (revised descriptions 2012) A4.1341 Polyclinum aurantium and Flustra foliacea on sand-scoured tide-swept moderately wave-exposed circalittoral rock same
For relation to plant communities (syntaxa), see Vegetation types

History

Classification Code Habitat type name Relationship type Comment
EUNIS Habitat Classification 200410 A4.1341 Polyclinum aurantium and Flustra foliacea on sand-scoured tide-swept moderately wave-exposed circalittoral rock same
EUNIS Habitat Classification 200308 A3.671 Polyclinum aurantium and Flustra foliacea on sand-scoured tide-swept moderately wave-exposed circalittoral rock same
EUNIS Habitat Classification 200202 A3.671 Stolonica socialis and/or Polyclinum aurantium with Flustra foliacea on slightly sand-scoured tide-swept moderately exposed circalittoral rock same
EUNIS Habitat Classification 199910 A3.671 Stolonica socialis and/or Polyclinum aurantium with Flustra foliacea on slightly sand-scoured tide-swept moderately exposed circalittoral rock same
MNCR BioMar 97.06 (Britain & Ireland) MCR.As.StoPaur Stolonica socialis and/or Polyclinum aurantium with Flustra foliacea on slightly sand-scoured tide-swept moderately exposed circalittoral rock same
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