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Lagis koreni and Phaxas pellucidus in circalittoral sandy mud

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Habitat (physical) description


 Salinity: Full (30-35 ppt) 
 Wave exposure: Exposed, Moderately exposed 
 Tidal streams: Strong (3-6 kn), Moderately strong (1-3 kn), Weak (>1 kn), Very weak (negligible) 
 Substratum: Sandy mud 
 Zone: Circalittoral 
 Depth Band: 10-20 m, 20-30 m, 30-50 m, 50-100 m 
 Other Features:  

Download comparative physical and biological data. The comparative tables enable a rapid comparison of the species composition and principal physical characteristics between a given set of biotopes.
Distribution of habitat SS.SMu.CSaMu.LkorPpel  Lagis koreni and Phaxas pellucidus in circalittoral sandy mud
Distribution of habitat SS.SMu.CSaMu.LkorPpel Lagis koreni and Phaxas pellucidus in circalittoral sandy mud, based on records on the JNCC marine database. Red dots represent records on which the biotope is based. Blue dots show orther certain records, black dots show records tentatively assigned to this biotope.

Biotope description

In stable circalittoral sandy mud dense populations of the tube building polychaete Lagis koreni may occur. Other species found in this habitat typically include bivalves such as Phaxas pellucidus, Mysella bidentata and Abra alba and polychaetes such as Mediomastus fragilis, Spiophanes bombyx, Owenia fusiformis and Scalibregma inflatum. At the sediment surface easily visible fauna include Lagis koreni and Ophiura ophiura. Lagis koreni is an important source of food for commercially important demersal fish, especially dab and plaice (Macer, 1967; Lockwood, 1980 and Basimi & Grove, 1985).


No situation data available.

Temporal variation

In some areas e.g. Liverpool Bay, AalbNuc and LkorPpel have exhibited cyclical behaviour with the community periodically switching from one biotope to another - possibly in relation to dredge spoil disposal (Rees et al. 1992) along with other environmental and biological factors. Both Lagis koreni and Phaxas pellucidus, are capable of tolerating sudden increases in the deposition of sediment and often dominate such areas following such an event. Indeed it is likely that the two biotopes are merely different aspects of the same community as Lagis koreni is often recorded with high densities of Abra alba (Eagle 1975; Rees and Walker 1983). Densities of mature populations of L. koreni may exceed 1000m-2

Similar biotopes

SS.SSa.CMuSa.AalbNucThe current biotope is closely related to AalbNuc but tends to occur in muddier substratum

Characterising Species

Taxa Frequency Typical Abundance % Contribution to similarity Abundance (no.2)
Cerianthus lloydii R 2
Nemertea A 5 214
Nereiphylla lutea A 2 86
Lumbrineris gracilis C 2 115
Prionospio ehlersi C 1 149
Spio F 2 70
Spiophanes bombyx C 7 636
Chaetopterus variopedatus R 1
Chaetozone C 1 52
Mediomastus fragilis F 5 312
Scalibregma inflatum C 3 174
Owenia fusiformis C 3 95
Amphictene auricoma C 1 323
Lagis koreni P 22
Lagis koreni A 8 882
Lanice conchilega F 8
Pariambus typicus F 2 94
Pseudocuma longicornis F 1 84
Pagurus bernhardus F 4
Macropodia rostrata R 1
Corystes cassivelaunus R 1
Liocarcinus depurator R 1
Buccinum undatum O 3
Nucula nitidosa F 1 44
Mysella bidentata C 6 1225
Phaxas pellucidus A 6 639
Abra alba C 4 441
Phoronis C 2 114
Asterias rubens O 6
Ophiuroidea A 2 175
Amphiura filiformis A 1 120
Ophiura albida C 6
Ophiura ophiura C 20
Psammechinus miliaris R 1
Echinocardium cordatum F 4
Callionymus lyra R 2
Pomatoschistus F 13
Pleuronectidae R 3

Example photographs of biotope

No characteristic photos currently available. If you are able to provide a photograph of this biotope please contact .

This report should be cited as:
The Marine Habitat Classification for Britain and Ireland Version 04.05 JNCC, Peterborough
ISBN 1 861 07561 8 (internet version)