AA.J Baltic photic sand


HELCOM RED LIST Biotope Expert Team

Textual description

Baltic bottoms in the photic zone with at least 90 % coverage of sand. Sand has less than 20 % of mud/silt/clay fraction (<63 µm), and the proportion of sand (grain size 0.063–2 mm) exceeds 70% of the combined gravel and sand fraction.

Physical environment

Salinity range: all; Exposure range: all; Depth range: photic zone

Characteristic species

Phanerogams, charales, mobile epifauna, infauna

Mapping advise (habitat delineation, identification, similar types)

Photic zone areas with pure sand, often characterized by ripple marks. Sediment must contain less than 20 % of mud/silt/clay fraction (<63 µm), and at least 70 % of grain size 63 µm–2 mm.

Quality descriptors

Soft sediment covering the sand will decrease the quality.

Anthropogenic threats

Silting caused by eutrophication, dredging spoil deposition etc.

Correspondence with other classification systems

HELCOM 1998:

2.5 Sandy bottoms

2.5.2 Sublittoral photic zone

 EUNIS 2012:

A5 Sublittoral sediment

A5.2 Sublittoral sand

A5.21 Sublittoral sand in low or reduced salinity