Coral Weed & Toothed Wrack at Kimmeridge

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P1060146aBlog1 Coral Weed (Corallina officinalis Linnaeus), a calcareous seaweed at Kimmeridge Bay, Dorset, UK on the Jurassic Coast World Heritage Site (1) 

Extensive fresh growths of the small pink calcareous seaweed Corallina officinalis Linnaeus were everywhere on the low seashore at Kimmeridge in March. Attached to the bedrock in shallow pools seeming very decorative and unusual. If you have a look at my previous Post of 19th February 2009 (Flat periwinkles and calcareous seaweed at Kimmeridge Bay), you can see the interesting white chalky beaded appearance of this Coral Weed when found dead and dried on the strandline.

P1060118aBlog2 A raft of mostly red seaweeds, including Coral Weed, washed up at Kimmeridge Bay, Dorset, UK on the Jurassic Coast World Heritage Site (2). 

Huge rafts of detached, mostly red, seaweeds including Corallina were accumulating at the water’s edge at the western edge of the bay and much of this will no doubt get left high and dry on the strandline eventually.

P1050960aBlog3 Toothed Wrack (Fucus serratus Linnaeus) growing low on the shore at Kimmeridge Bay, Dorset, UK on the Jurassic Coast World Heritage Site (3) 

Also growing rapidly at the western end of the bay were extensive beds of the Toothed Wrack Fucus serratus Linnaeus. You can see from the close up picture above that it is olive green in colour although it belongs to the brown seaweed group. It is a fairly small, short alga with branched fronds with a midrib. The edges of the blades are serrated or toothed and they do not have either gas bladders or noticeably swollen reproductive bodies at the tips of the fronds.

In the picture below you can see how the whole bed of Toothed Wrack looked on the lower shore as the tide was going out.

You can find more information on the marLIN web site about Corallina officinalis and Fucus serratus.

For more information about Kimmeridge Bay and its wildlife see the Purbeck Marine Wildlife Reserve Web Site. 
 
P1060026aBlog4 A bed of Toothed Wrack (Fucus serratus Linnaeus) growing low on the shore at Kimmeridge Bay, Dorset, UK on the Jurassic Coast World Heritage Site (4). 

COPYRIGHT JESSICA WINDER 2011

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