[Chthamalus montagui] and [Chthamalus stellatus] on exposed upper eulittoral rock

Description of [Chthamalus montagui] and [Chthamalus stellatus] on exposed upper eulittoral rock


flag A1.1121
creatorIdentity remo
creationTime 2017-08-16T16:38:12.847
Last Maintainer Identity remo
modificationTime 2016-03-16T18:42:49
id 2629
imageSize 0 Bytes

Very exposed to moderately exposed upper and mid eulittoral bedrock and boulders characterised by a dense community of barnacles, including Chthamalus montagui, Chthamalus stellatus and Semibalanus balanoides, and the limpet Patella vulgata. Damp cracks and crevices in the rock provide a refuge for small individuals of the mussel Mytilus edulis, and the winkles Melarhaphe neritoides and Littorina saxatilis. These crevices can also be occupied by encrusting coralline algae and the anemone Actinia equina. Patches of the black lichen Verrucaria maura and the green seaweed Enteromorpha intestinalis may be present, though in low abundance (Occasional). Shaded vertical littoral fringe and upper eulittoral bedrock may be characterised by the shade-tolerant red seaweeds Catenella caespitosa, Bostrychia scorpioides and/or Lomentaria articulata. Where the turf of C. caespitosa is well established, barnacles are rare. Geographical variation: There is much regional variation in the distribution and zonation of Chthamalus spp. On the west coast Chthamalus spp. dominate the upper eulittoral, often forming a distinct white band above a darker band of S. balanoides in the mid eulittoral zone. C. montagui is better adapted to resist desiccation and, therefore, extends further up the shore. In the south-west Chthamalus spp. can be the dominant barnacles throughout the eulittoral zone. Situation: This unit is found below the black lichen Verrucaria maura (B3.1131 or B3.1132) on very exposed shores. It is found above the mussel Mytilus edulis and barnacles biotope (A1.111). On slightly less exposed shores the wrack Fucus vesiculosus is able to survive and a mixed barnacle and F. vesiculosus biotope may occur (A1.1132) beneath A1.1121. On such moderately exposed shores A1.1121may still occur on steep and vertical faces, while fucoids dominate the flatter areas (A1.1132 or A1.1132), though these communities should not be confused with A1.1132. On very sheltered sea lochs in Argyll, West Scotland Chthamalus spp. are unusually abundant in the upper eulittoral zone.