Description of Seaweeds in sediment-floored eulittoral rockpools
Rockpools with sediment (mud, sand, gravel) floors support distinct communities of scour-tolerant seaweeds. Deep pools with sediment are similar to unit A1.412, and are typically dominated by fucoids and kelp (Fucus serratus, Laminaria digitata, Laminaria saccharina and Saccorhiza polyschides). Areas of hard substrata near to the interface with the sediment are, however, characterised by a range of sand-tolerant seaweeds such as Furcellaria lumbricalis, Polyides rotundus, Ahnfeltia plicata and Rhodochorton purpureum (compare with unit A1.412). Chorda filum may occur attached to pebbles and shells embedded within the sediment while the top shell Gibbula cineraria can be found underneath or among the pebbles. In pools with large areas of sand, infaunal species such as Arenicola marina and Lanice conchilega often occur. The seagrass Zostera spp. may occur in some pools where stable sand is present. Shallow rockpools with cobble and pebble floors, often with an underlying layer of sediment, support red algal tufts consisting of coralline crust, Corallina officinalis, Chondrus crispus, Mastocarpus stellatus mixed with Ceramium spp. and the green seaweeds Cladophora spp. and Enteromorpha intestinalis. The long list of characterising species is partly due to low similarity between the available records and care should be taken not to interpret this solely as a very high species richness. Situation: Rockpools throughout the eulittoral zone in bedrock on exposed to sheltered shores. Temporal variation: Seasonal fluctuations in the abundance of ephemeral seaweeds will occur.
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