Rocky shore field ID guide:

Comments

Transcription

Rocky shore field ID guide:
Rocky shore field ID guide:
Common UK species
Seaweeds
Greens
Sea lettuce
Found on the upper shore and in rock pools.
Good indicator of fresh water input into the marine
environment, as it can tolerate a wide range of
salinities.
Gut weed
Found on the upper shore and in areas of fresh water
input.
Can tolerate a wide range of salinities and is very
tolerant to drying out, hence it settles widely on the
rocky shore.
Browns
Saw wrack
Found on the upper-mid shore.
Characterised by tooth-like notches on its fronds.
Bladder wrack
Found on the mid-lower shore.
Has smooth fronds characterised by a pair of air
bladders.
Has a strong holdfast which prevents in from being
washed away by the tide.
Spiral wrack
Found on the high shore.
Has ridged branching fronds with no air bladders.
Egg wrack
Found on the mid shore.
Long fronds with large egg-shaped air
bladders.
Channelled wrack
Found on the high shore.
Short channelled fronds with two small branches
extending from each.
Kelp
Found on the lower shore.
Characterised by long solid stipes and large leathery
fronds.
Has a strong holdfast which prevents it from being
washed away by the tide.
Reds
Coral weed
Found on the lower shore and in rock pools.
Has calcium carbonate segments which protects it
against grazers.
Irish moss
Found on the mid-lower shore and in rock pools.
Adapts to drying out by settling under or near canopy
forming species such as bladder wrack and tooth wrack.
Dulse
Found on the lower shore, often attached to kelp
stipes,
Dulse is characterised by wide, flat and ribbon-like
fronds.
Pepper dulse
Usually found on the mid-lower shore,
Pepper dulse is characterised by short tips with
feathered branches, similar in appearance to ‘little
Christmas trees’.
Ceramium
Grows on other seaweeds and in rock pools.
Forms in tufts with fine filaments.
Purple laver
Usually found on the mid-upper shore, particularly if there
is sand present.
Grows in slimy sheets across the rocky shore.
Used in the production of Welsh laver bread.
Lichens
Black tar lichen
Lichens are formed by a mutually beneficial
relationship between algae and fungi.
Occur on open rock and come in a range of colours.
Animals
Breadcrumb sponge
Sponges are formed by a colony of microscopic, single
celled animals.
Found on open bedrock, boulders and in crevices.
Limpets
Marine snails found in greatest abundance on the
mid-shore.
Limpets don’t move during low tide where they settle
in ‘homescars’ to minimise water loss.
During high tide, limpets actively graze on algae
before returning back to their homescar to wait out
the low tide.
Barnacles
Barnacles are small animals which live in colonies on
open bedrock and boulders.
They have an ‘operculum’, or trap door to reduce water
loss during low tide.
By living in colonies, barnacles are able to regulate the
temperature of the environment around them,
reproduce, and collectively filter feed without moving
for their entire lives once settled out on the shore.
Dog whelk
Dog whelks are marine snails with either pale
yellow, white or grey pointed shells.
Often found on the mid-lower shore in cracks and
crevices.
On more exposed or wave crashed shores,
dog whelks develop a larger foot to enable them to
stay attached to rocks. On more sheltered shores,
dog whelks develop a thicker shell, and a less well developed foot to help protect
them from predators.
Topshells
Topshells are marine snails, characterised by a pyramid
shaped shell, and are often found on the lower shore as
they are not tolerant to drying out.
Periwinkles
Periwinkles are marine snails, characterised by
pointed shells which are black, grey or dark brown in
colour.
Periwinkles, and other winkles, are found on the
upper shore as they have an ‘operculum’ or trap door
that enables them to close their shells during low tide
to avoid drying out.
Anemones
Found on the mid-lower shore amongst cracks and
crevices.
Anemones are related to jellyfish, due to the
possession of stinging cell tentacles that they use to
catch their prey.
During low tide (pictured), anemones retract their
tentacles and produce mucus which helps prevent
water loss.
Hermit crabs
Found on the high-mid shore and in rock pools.
Hermit crabs use the empty shells of marine snails
to protect them from drying out and from being
eaten by predators.
Blue velvet swimming crab
Found on the mid-low shore under boulders and in
rock pools.
Blue velvet swimming crabs have dark blue shells
and red eyes.
The blue velvet swimming crab can be very
aggressive so be careful when trying to handle them.
Shore crab
Found on the mid-low shore under boulders and
in rock pools.
Shore crabs are usually green in colour with
sharp ‘points’ on the front edge of the shell.
Just like most rocky shore crabs, shore crabs
move very little during low tide to minimise
water loss through their leg joints.
Edible crab
Found on the mid-low shore under boulders and in
rock pools.
Edible crabs have red-brown or pinkish colour shells
with a ‘pie-crust’ pattern around the edge.
Starfish
Starfish are not tolerant of freshwater or drying
out, so must remain on the lower shore and are
often found under boulders.
Starfish have tube feet which help them stick to
rocks so they don’t get washed away in the
tide.
They can also grow back an arm if eaten by a
predator.

Similar documents