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LR.HLR.MusB.Sem
Semibalanus balanoides on exposed to moderately exposed or vertical sheltered eulittoral rock

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Habitat (physical) description

Distribution

 Salinity: Full (30-35 ppt) 
 Wave exposure: Exposed, Moderately exposed 
 Tidal streams:  
 Substratum: Bedrock; large boulders 
 Zone: Eulittoral - mid, Eulittoral - upper 
 Depth Band: Mid shore, Upper shore 
 Other Features: Also on sheltered vertical bedrock 

Download comparative physical and biological data. The comparative tables enable a rapid comparison of the species composition and principal physical characteristics between a given set of biotopes.

Previous code

This biotope occurred in previous versions of the classification as:
ELR.BPat.Sem - Version: 97.06

Distribution of habitat LR.HLR.MusB.Sem  Semibalanus balanoides on exposed to moderately exposed or vertical sheltered eulittoral rock
Distribution of habitat LR.HLR.MusB.Sem Semibalanus balanoides on exposed to moderately exposed or vertical sheltered eulittoral rock, based on records on the UK Marine Recorder database and EUSeaMap. Red dots represent records on which the biotope is based. Blue dots show other certain records, black dots show records tentatively assigned to this biotope. Yellow areas show level 2 and 3 sublittoral and deep-sea habitats prediced by EUSeaMap within UK waters.

Biotope description

Exposed to moderately exposed mid to upper eulittoral bedrock and large boulders characterised by dense barnacles Semibalanus balanoides and the limpet Patella vulgata. The community has a relatively low diversity of species though occasional cracks and crevices in the rock can provide a refuge for small individuals of the mussel Mytilus edulis, the winkle Littorina saxatilis and the whelk Nucella lapillus. Seaweeds are usually not found in high numbers though fissures and crevices in the bedrock can hold a sparse algal community including the green seaweed Enteromorpha intestinalis. On some shores the olive green lichen Verrucaria mucosa can be present in some abundance (Frequent). Three variants have been described: A S. balanoides and P. vulgata dominated community on bedrock (Sem.Sem); S. balanoides and sparse Fucus vesioculosus and red seaweeds (Sem.FvesR); and barnacles and L. littorea eulittoral boulders and cobbles (Sem.LlitX).

Situation

On very exposed to exposed shores Chthamalus spp. (see Cht for geographical variation) often forms a distinct white band above a darker band of S. balanoides in the mid eulittoral zone. Alternatively, the black lichen Verrucaria maura dominated biotopes (Ver.Ver or Ver.B) may be found above Sem. In the lower eulittoral and the sublittoral fringe a community dominated by the wrack Himanthalia elongata and various red seaweeds such as Corallina officinalis, Mastocarpus stellatus and Osmundea pinnatifida (Him; Coff; Osm) often occurs. Sem may also occur on steep and vertical faces on more sheltered shores, while fucoids dominate the flatter areas (FvesB; Sem.FvesR).

Temporal variation

Periods with little scour or calmer weather can allow a seaweed community to develop, creating a more diverse biotope (i.e. Fves or FvesB). This is a dynamic process, which will change individual sites over time. More information is required to determine the exact nature of this process.

Similar biotopes

Not applicable or unknown.

Characterising Species

Taxa Frequency Typical Abundance % Contribution to similarity
Semibalanus balanoides A 38
Patella vulgata C 18
Littorina C 8
Littorina saxatilis F 5
Nucella lapillus F 5
Mytilus edulis O 9
Enteromorpha intestinalis O 2
Verrucaria mucosa F 2

Example photographs of biotope


Upper mid-shore boulders with Semibalanus balanoides and surveyor., Between E & W Wideopen, Teresa Bennett, © JNCC Close up of barnacles on rock, Ardwall Island South, N Solway, David Mills, © JNCC View across boulder shore dominated by barnacles, Great Carr, North Berwick., David Connor, © JNCC
Click on an image for a larger view


Version 15.03 of the classification adds a deep-sea section to version 04.05; therefore superseding version 04.05, 97.06 and 03.02.

This online classification should be cited as:

JNCC (2015) The Marine Habitat Classification for Britain and Ireland Version 15.03 [Online]. [Date accessed]. Available from: jncc.defra.gov.uk/MarineHabitatClassification

Information from the shallower section (up to sublittoral sediment, taken from Version 04.05) be cited as the report accompanying Version 04.05, as follows:

CONNOR, D.W., J.H. ALLEN, N.GOLDING, K.L.HOWELL, L.M. LIEBERKNECHT, K.O. NORTHEN AND J.B. REKER (2004) The Marine Habitat Classification for Britain and Ireland Version 04.05. In: JNCC (2015) The Marine Habitat Classification for Britain and Ireland Version 15.03 [Online]. [Date accessed].
Available from: jncc.defra.gov.uk/MarineHabitatClassification
ISBN 1 861 07561 8


Information from the deep-sea section (added in March 2015) should be cited as the report accompanying the deep-sea section, as follows:

PARRY, M.E.V., K.L. HOWELL, B.E. NARAYANASWAMY, B.J. BETT, D.O.B. JONES, D.J. HUGHES, N. PIECHAUD, T.D. NICKELL, H. ELLWOOD, N. ASKEW, C. JENKINS and E. MANCA (2015) A Deep-sea Section for the Marine Habitat Classification of Britain and Ireland. JNCC report 530. In: JNCC (2015) The Marine Habitat Classification for Britain and Ireland Version 15.03 [Online]. [Date accessed].
Available from: jncc.defra.gov.uk/MarineHabitatClassification
ISSN 0963 8901