Biodiversity & Conservation

Laminaria saccharina on reduced or low salinity infralittoral rock


<i>%Laminaria saccharina%</i> on reduced or low salinity infralittoral rock
Distribution map

IR.SIR.K.LsacRS recorded (dark blue bullet) and expected (light blue bullet) distribution in Britain and Ireland (see below)

  • EC_Habitats

Species indicative of sensitivity

To assess the sensitivity of the biotope, the sensitivity of component species is reviewed. Those species that are considered to be particularly indicative of the sensitivity of the biotope, and for which research has been undertaken in detail are shown below (see selection criteria). The biology of other component species of the biotope is also taken into account wherever information is known to the researcher.

Rare of scarce species associated with this biotope

Community Importance Species name Common Name
Important structural Ascidiella scabra A sea squirt
Key structural Asterias rubens Common starfish
Key structural Balanus crenatus An acorn barnacle
Important other Ceramium virgatum A red seaweed
Important other Clavelina lepadiformis Light bulb sea squirt
Important other Halichondria panicea Breadcrumb sponge
Key structural Saccharina latissima Sugar kelp
Important other Mytilus edulis Common mussel
Important other Pomatoceros triqueter Keel worm
Important other Ulva lactuca Sea lettuce
Key functional Psammechinus miliaris Green sea urchin


The biotope SIR.LsacRS occurs as SIR.LsacRS.FiR with filamentous algae and sponges particularly characteristic in southwest Britain and as SIR.LsacRS.Phy, with Phyllophora crispa especially characteristic and SIR.LsacRS.Psa with Psammechinus miliaris especially characteristic in western Scotland. The importance of Psammechinus miliaris in the biotope is, however, as a key functional species that affects the biotope through grazing. The range of species in the sub-biotopes is large but the species selected as indicative of sensitivity are or represent species that may be common in at least some examples of the biotope.

Additional information

The nationally scarce mollusc Akera bullata has been recorded in two examples of SIR.LsacRS.Phy.

This review can be cited as follows:

Hiscock, K. 2002. Laminaria saccharina on reduced or low salinity infralittoral rock. Marine Life Information Network: Biology and Sensitivity Key Information Sub-programme [on-line]. Plymouth: Marine Biological Association of the United Kingdom. [cited 29/11/2015]. Available from: <>