Biodiversity & Conservation

Erect sponges, Eunicella verrucosa and Pentapora fascialis on slightly tide-swept moderately exposed circalittoral rock.

CR.HCR.XFa.ByErSp.Eun


MCR.ErSEun

Image Rohan Holt - Bedrock with the sea fan Eunicella verrucosa, the soft coral Alcyonium glomeratum and the stalked sponge Raspailia ramosa amongst a hydroid turf. Image width ca 1.0 m.
Image copyright information

  • #
  • #
  • #
  • #
  • #
  • #
Distribution map

CR.HCR.XFa.ByErSp.Eun recorded (dark blue bullet) and expected (light blue bullet) distribution in Britain and Ireland (see below)


  • EC_Habitats

Marine natural heritage importance

Listed under EC Habitats Directive
National importance Not available
Habitat Directive feature (Annex 1) Reefs
Large shallow inlets and bays

Biotope importance

The biotope is quite species rich and has some complex species interactions. The biotope may have some importance for mobile predators and scavengers such as fish and crabs that may pass through.

Exploitation

There is no known exploitation of the 3 selected key or important characterizing species in this biotope. Eunicella verrucosa is subject to a UK Biodiversity Action Plan (Anonymous, 1999l). The sea urchin Echinus esculentus is potentially subject to exploitation. The roe may be collected locally for eating but the main reason for extraction is for the curio trade. The possibility of a sea urchin fishery in Shetland for the Japanese market has been investigated recently (Penfold et al. 1996).

Additional information icon Additional information

Eunicella verrucosa is protected under schedule 5 of the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981 against killing, injuring, taking possession and sale and is the subject of a UK Biodiversity Action Plan. Echinus esculentus, a characterizing species in the biotope, is listed under Schedule 7 of The Wildlife (NI) Order as an animal that must not be sold alive or dead at any time.)


This review can be cited as follows:

Jackson, A. & Hiscock, K. 2000. Erect sponges, Eunicella verrucosa and Pentapora fascialis on slightly tide-swept moderately exposed circalittoral rock.. Marine Life Information Network: Biology and Sensitivity Key Information Sub-programme [on-line]. Plymouth: Marine Biological Association of the United Kingdom. [cited 30/10/2014]. Available from: <http://www.marlin.ac.uk/habitatimportance.php?habitatid=77&code=2004>