BIOTIC Species Information for Nephtys hombergii
Researched byLizzie Tyler Data supplied byUniversity of Sheffield
Refereed byThis information is not refereed.
Distribution and Habitat
Distribution in Britain & IrelandFound throughout Britain and Ireland.
Global distributionFound from the northern Atlantic, from such areas as the Barents Sea, the Baltic and the North Sea, to the Mediterranean. Nephtys hombergii has been reported from as far south as South Africa.
Biogeographic rangeNot researched Depth range
MigratoryNon-migratory / Resident   
Distribution Additional InformationMaximum densities of Nephtys hombergii tend to occur in the lower part of the intertidal that is also occupied by %Arenicola marina% (Clark & Haderlie, 1960; Clark et al., 1962) but Nephtys hombergii has been collected from dredge hauls at various depths. On some shores, the intertidal zonation of Nephtys hombergii is probably determined by the type of substratum found at various levels (Clark & Haderlie, 1960). Although the species may colonize a variety of substrata, Nephtys hombergii may be found in higher densities in muddy environments and this tends to isolate it from %Nephtys cirrosa%, which is characteristic of cleaner, fairly coarse sand. High densities of Nephtys hombergii were found in substrata of 0.3% particles >0.25mm and 5.8% <0.125mm in diameter but the worm tolerated up to 3.8% 0.25mm and 2.2-15.9% <0.125mm (Clark et al.,1962).

Nephtys species penetrate into the mouths of estuaries and estuarine lagoons until the salinity falls below 20 psu, but Nephtys hombergii occasionally extends into waters with a salinity <18 psu (Barnes, 1994). Clark & Haderlie (1960) found Nephtys hombergii in the Bristol Channel at salinities between 15.9 psu and 25.1 psu.

Substratum preferencesCoarse clean sand
Fine clean sand
Muddy sand
Sandy mud
Physiographic preferencesOpen coast
Enclosed coast / Embayment
Biological zoneMid Eulittoral
Lower Eulittoral
Sublittoral Fringe
Wave exposureModerately Exposed
Very Sheltered
Extremely Sheltered
Tidal stream strength/Water flowInsufficient information
SalinityVariable (18-40 psu)
Reduced (18-30 psu)
Habitat Preferences Additional InformationNone entered
Distribution References Rainer, 1989, Rainer, 1990, Hayward & Ryland, 1995b, Hayward et al., 1996, Rainer, 1991, Fish & Fish, 1996, Clark & Haderlie, 1960, Clark et al., 1962, Barnes, 1994, Clay, 1967(f), Alheit, 1978, Hayward & Ryland, 1990, Julie Bremner, unpub data,
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