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SS.SSa.CMuSa
Circalittoral muddy sand

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Habitat (physical) description

Distribution

 Salinity: Full (30-35 ppt) 
 Wave exposure: Exposed, Moderately exposed 
 Tidal streams: Moderately strong (1-3 kn), Weak (>1 kn), Very weak (negligible) 
 Substratum: Fine to very fine sand with a fine silt fraction 
 Zone: Circalittoral 
 Depth Band: 10-20 m, 20-30 m, 30-50 m 
 Other Features:  

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.
Distribution of habitat SS.SSa.CMuSa  Circalittoral muddy sand
Distribution of habitat SS.SSa.CMuSa Circalittoral muddy sand, 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

Circalittoral non-cohesive muddy sands with the silt content of the substratum typically ranging from 5% to 20%. This habitat is generally found in water depths of over 15-20m and supports animal-dominated communities characterised by a wide variety of polychaetes, bivalves such as Abra alba and Nucula nitidosa, and echinoderms such as Amphiura spp and Ophiura spp., and Astropecten irregularis. These circalittoral habitats tend to be more stable than their infralittoral counterparts and as such support a richer infaunal community.

Situation

No situation data available.

Temporal variation

No temporal data available.

Similar biotopes

Not applicable or unknown.

Characterising Species

Taxa Frequency Typical Abundance % Contribution to similarity Abundance (no.2)
Cerianthus lloydii F 1 22
Metridium senile R 5
Sagartiogeton undatus O 1
Nemertea P 2
Sthenelais limicola P 1 6
Goniada maculata P 2 9
Nephtys C 5 54
Nephtys hombergii C 2 14
Scoloplos armiger P 3 19
Prionospio fallax P 1 6
Spiophanes bombyx F 6 48
Chaetozone setosa C 6 81
Scalibregma inflatum P 2 30
Owenia fusiformis P 2 13
Terebellidae O 1
Lanice conchilega P 2 14
Lanice conchilega O 4
Bathyporeia tenuipes P 1 21
Pagurus bernhardus O 8
Macropodia rostrata R 2
Corystes cassivelaunus P 1 5
Corystes cassivelaunus O 2
Liocarcinus depurator R 2
Philine aperta O 2
Nucula nitidosa F 11 118
Solenidae S 2 52
Fabulina fabula C 7 86
Gari fervensis P 1 7
Abra alba A 12 495
Abra prismatica F 2 22
Chamelea gallina P 1 9
Astropecten irregularis O 6
Asterias rubens O 14
Amphiura brachiata C 18
Ophiura albida A 1 40
Ophiura albida O 2
Ophiura ophiura O 6
Echinocardium cordatum R 5
Labidoplax digitata O 1
Pomatoschistus minutus O 3

Example photographs of biotope

No characteristic photos currently available. If you are able to provide a photograph of this biotope please contact .


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