Distribution of kelps in European coastal waters

Alaria esculenta

Laminaria digitata

Laminaria hyperborea

Laminaria ochroleuca

Laminaria rodriguezii

Laminaria saccharina

 Laminaria japonica

Laminaria solidungula

Phyllariopsis breviceps

Phyllariopsis purpurascens

Saccorhiza dermatodea

Saccorhiza polyschides

Undaria pinnatifida

Alaria esculenta

This is an Arctic-cold temperate amphioceanic seaweed, which is the only member of the genus Alaria found in the North Atlantic, although there are about 10 species in the North Pacific. The most southerly population of the species is on the coast of Brittany, but it is found on the south-western coasts of England and has been reported on the Channel coasts. It is also found around most of Ireland and northwards to Rockall and Iceland. The species is present around the coasts of Scotland and northwards along the Norwegian coast but is absent from the Baltic and most of the North Sea although it is found on the English coast as far south as Flamborough Head. It has been reported from the Barents Sea and Svarlbard Archipelago and is found on the western coasts of Novaya Zemlya. It is also found outside European waters.

 

 

 

Laminaria digitata

This is a North Atlantic Arctic-cold-temperate species which does not occur in the North Pacific. The southernmost occurrence of this species in European waters is on the southern coasts of Brittany. It is found around south-western England, the coasts of Ireland and northward to Rockall, the Faeroes and Iceland. It is also found along both coasts of the English Channel, and the North Sea coasts of Scandinavia. It is absent from the east coasts of England and from the Baltic. It is apparently extending its range into the southern part of the North Sea, given suitable habitat. Its northerly range extends into the Barents Sea and the western shores of Novaya Zemlya and it is reported from the Svarlbard Archipelago. It is also found in the North Atlantic outside European waters.

 

 

 

 

Laminaria hyperborea

This is a European North Atlantic cold-temperate species which does not extend into areas influenced by Arctic waters. Its southernmost habitat is Cape Mondego in mid-Portugal and the range then extends northward around the corner of the Iberian peninsula onto the northern coast of Spain. It is absent from the Bay of Biscay and then is found on the southern coasts of Brittany and along the channel coasts of France and England. It is found around Ireland, on Rockall, the Faeroes and around Iceland. It is found in the south-west of England, Wales and around the Scottish coasts and, in all these north-western areas, forms dense forests fringing the coasts where the substratum and wave regime allow. From the northern part of Denmark its range extends along the Swedish coast and northwards along the Norwegian coast to the Bay of Murmansk. It is not found in the Baltic and there are few records for south-east coasts of England due to lack of suitable substrata.

 

 

 

Laminaria ochroleuca

This is a warm-temperate, Lusitanian species. It is found from Morocco (and possibly the Azores) where it is the kelp forest species in place of L. hyperborea, northwards on the Atlantic coasts as far as the English Channel and Lundy in the Bristol Channel. In the northern part of its range it is found with L. hyperborea in a mixed kelp forest. Since 1940, this species has been found on the coasts of southern England and is apparently indicative of a slow northward extension of warmer waters. It is also found on the shores of the south-west Mediterranean and in the Straits of Messina.

 

 

 

 

Laminaria rodriguezii

This species is endemic to the Mediterranean and is found on the coasts of Algeria, Tunisia, Majorca, Corsica, Sicily and the shores of the Adriatic Sea. However, it is restricted to depths of 50 - 120 m where the water temperatures do not exceed 15 ºC.

 

 

 

 

 

Laminaria saccharina

This species has an amphioceanic heritage and an Arctic-cold temperate distribution. It is found in European Atlantic waters as far south as the coasts of northern Portugal, although it is not recorded from the northern coast of Spain or in the Bay of Biscay. It is found on the southern and northern coasts of Brittany, all around Ireland and north-eastwards to Iceland. It is found on the French and English channel coasts, south-western England, Wales and Scotland but is only found sporadically on the east coast of England. It is not found in the Baltic. Its distribution continues from Denmark, Sweden and the coasts of Norway around the coasts of the Barents Sea to the western shores of Novaya Zemlya and north as far as the Svarlbard archipelago. It is also found outside European waters.

 

 

 

 

Laminaria japonica

This species has been introduced into the Mediterranean, probably with imported oysters for aquaculture. It is similar in appearance to L. saccharina.

Laminaria solidungula

This species is found throughout the Arctic to which it is endemic and, within European waters, it is known only from the Svarlbard Archipelago and from Novaya Zemlya.

Phyllariopsis breviceps

A warm-temperate species found in deep water. The southern range ends at the Western Sahara border with Morocco, extending northward on the eastern Atlantic coast to Biarritz. This species is also found in the western basin of the Mediterranean.

 

 

 

 

 

Phyllariopsis purpurascens

A warm-temperate species found in deep water. The southern range ends at the Western Saharan border with Morocco, extending northward on the eastern Atlantic coast to the Spanish-Galician coast. This species is found in the southern part of the western basin of the Mediterranean.

 

 

 

 

 

 Saccorhiza dermatodea

This is a cold water species with an Arctic-cold temperate North Atlantic distribution. In European waters its most southerly habitat is the northern coast of Iceland. It is also found along the Norwegian coast and is reported from Novaya Zemlya and the Svarlbard Archipelago. It is also found outside European waters.

 

 

 

 

 

Saccorhiza polyschides

This is a European North Atlantic species, which is also found in a few places in the Mediterranean Sea. On the Atlantic coast it is found as far south as Cape Jubi, Morocco, extending northward along the Spanish and Portuguese coasts. It is found on the coast of France, Brittany, south-west England, Wales, Ireland and Scotland. To the north it is found in the Shetland Islands and along the western coast of Norway as far as Rörvik. It is not found in the North Sea or in the Baltic or outside European waters.

 

 

 

 

Undaria pinnatifida

This species is found in several places within Europe and is increasing its range. The species originated in the Northwest Pacific, where it is harvested and cultivated as a food species (wakame). In recent years it has been introduced into Europe both accidentally (into the northern Mediterranean through the movement of shellfish for aquaculture, and on the hulls of leisure boats to marinas in Southern England) and also deliberately for aquaculture purposes (northern Brittany).

 

 

 

 

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