Red List habitat classification > RL - Marine habitats > RLNEA - Atlantic > NEAA1.34 Macaronesian communities of lower eulittoral rock sheltered from wave action

Macaronesian communities of lower eulittoral rock sheltered from wave action

Quick facts

Red List habitat type code NEAA1.34
Threat status
Europe Vulnerable
EU Vulnerable
Relation to
Source European Red List habitat factsheet
European Red List of habitats reports
European Red List of habitats (Excel table)

Summary

This habitat occurs in the sheltered lower horizon of the mediolittoral rock and develops in response to the combined effects of little wave action, variations in atmospheric pressure,  wind and tide. The dominant aspect is the constant humidity of the substratum. It is found throughout Macaronesia in the Azores, Madeira and the Canary Islands and includes a proposed newly described biotope  ‘Association with Enteromorpha compressa’ which occurs in the Azores. 

Indicators of quality:

Both biotic and abiotic indicators have been used to describe marine habitat quality. These include: the presence of characteristic species as well as those which are sensitive to the pressures the habitat may face; water quality parameters; levels of exposure to particular pressure, and more integrated indices which describe habitat structure and function, such as trophic index, or successional stages of development in habitats that have a natural cycle of change over time.

There are no commonly agreed indicators of quality for this habitat, although particular parameters may have been set in certain situations e.g. protected features within Natura 2000 sites, where reference values have been determined and applied on a location-specific basis.

One of the associated species, Padina pavonica, is affected by and thrives under acidic conditions and may therefore be useful as a bioindicator of ocean acidification

Characteristic species
For full habitat description, please download the habitat factsheet.

Threat status

Synthesis of Red List assessment

Detailed information on the abundance and extent of this habitat is lacking but survey information reveals that it does not have a narrow geographical distribution. Based on existing records it appears to have a small Area of Occupancy. Historical trend data are not available but expert opinion is that there is likely to be a substantial reduction in abiotic and/or biotic quality in the future. This habitat has therefore been assessed as Vulnerable under criteria B2 and C/D2.
EU
Red List Category Red List Criteria
Vulnerable B2, C/D2
Europe
Red List Category Red List Criteria
Vulnerable B2, C/D2

Confidence in the assessment

low
Red List of habitat categories and criteria descriptions

Pressures and threats

  • Urbanisation, residential and commercial development
    • Urbanised areas, human habitation
  • Pollution
    • Pollution to surface waters (limnic, terrestrial, marine & brackish)
    • Nutrient enrichment (N, P, organic matter)
    • Marine water pollution
  • Invasive, other problematic species and genes
    • Invasive non-native species
  • Climate change
    • Changes in abiotic conditions

Habitat restoration potential

There is insufficient information to determine whether this habitat retains the capacity to recover when severely damaged.

Trends in extent

Average current trend in quantity

Unknown Unknown
EU28 EU28+

Trends in quality

Average current trend in quality

Unknown Unknown
EU28 EU28+

Conservation and management needs

This habitat is included within some Marine Protected Areas where there are associated management measures, regulations and codes of conduct but not necessarily targeting this specific habitat. Regulation of coastal development and discharges to the marine environment and control of activities that might lead to the introduction of invasive species are other measures that could benefit this habitat.

List of conservation and management needs

  • Measures related to wetland, freshwater and coastal habitats
    • Restoring/Improving water quality
  • Measures related to spatial planning
    • Other marine-related measures
    • Establish protected areas/sites
  • Measures related to urban areas, industry, energy and transport
    • Urban and industrial waste management
    • Managing marine traffic

Distribution

For each habitat a distribution map was produced from a wide variety of sources indicating known and potential occurrences of the habitat in 10x10 km grids within Europe. Occurrences in grid cells were given in two classes: actual distribution from relatively reliable sources (surveys, expert knowledge), and potential distribution based on models or less reliable indicators. Please download the fact sheet to see the map.

Geographic occurrence and trends

Seas Present or presence uncertain Current area of habitat (Km2) Recent trend in quantity (last 50 years) Recent trend in quality (last 50 years)
Macaronesia Present Unknown Unknown Unknown

Extent of Occurrence, Area of Occupancy and habitat area

Extent of Occurrence (EOO) (Km2) Area of Occupancy (AOO) Current estimated Total Area Comment
EU28 603,285 47 Unknown EOO and AOO have been calculated on the available data. Although this data set is known to be incomplete the figures exceed the thresholds for threatened status.
EU28+ 47 Unknown EOO and AOO have been calculated on the available data. Although this data set is known to be incomplete the figures exceed the thresholds for threatened status.
AOO = the area occupied by a habitat measured in number of 10x10 km grid cells.
EOO = the area (km2) of the envelope around all occurrences of a habitat (calculated by a minimum convex polygon).

Characteristic species

The full list of characteristic species and genus are available above from the Summary. The species available in the EUNIS database are shown here.
Algae Colpomenia sinuosa
Algae Dasycladus vermicularis
Algae Enteromorpha compressa
Algae Padina pavonica
Algae Stypocaulon scoparium
Invertebrates Xantho poressa
Species scientific name English common name Species group
Colpomenia sinuosa Algae
Dasycladus vermicularis Algae
Enteromorpha compressa Algae
Padina pavonica Algae
Stypocaulon scoparium Algae
Xantho poressa Invertebrates

Vegetation types

Relation to vegetation types (syntaxa)

Not available

Other classifications

Not available
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