31 Jan 2009

Sociable limpets.

You can't help but get the impression that they like company when hunkered down at low tide. Compare and contrast to Limpet City, where the creatures seem to be more uniformly distributed over the surface in a bid for limpetsraum. Look at how bare the rock is.Either the limpets do an excellent job of eating every alga that tries to grow, the rock is not a suitable substrate for seaweed holdfasts to penetrate or it's just too bashed about by the North Sea for the wrack that grows everywhere else to settle. Maybe all three. It'd be interesting to erect a limpet-proof fence around a section of this rock flat to see what happens in the enclosure.

1 comment:

Cliff Thornton said...

Why don`t you try marking the top pf the limpet shells with small spots of paint and seeing if they always return to their same group after grazing on the rocks during high tide?