Common (Translated Scientific) Name: Saltwater Aquatic Vegetation Subclass
Colloquial Name: Saltwater Aquatic Vegetation
Hierarchy Level: Subclass
Type Concept: Saltwater Aquatic Vegetation wetlands are distinct wetlands transitional along the coast between the intertidal salt marshes or other intertidal areas, and permanent, deep water oceans. More rarely they occur in inland saline habitats. The lower limits of salinity are set at 0.5 ppt, below which it is considered freshwater. Submerged or floating aquatic plants usually dominate the vegetation, with <10% of the surface water area occluded by standing emergent or woody plants. Macroalga may be common. Open surface water at a range of depths is present for all or most of the year.
Diagnostic Characteristics: Saltwater Aquatic Vegetation occurs in shallow to deep water habitats where emergent vegetation is <10% cover, and submerged or floating-aquatic plants have >1% cover, with the lower limits of salinity set at 0.5 ppt, below which it is considered freshwater. Water levels are seasonally stable, permanently flooded, or intermittently exposed during droughts, low flows, or intertidal periods. This vegetation occurs around the globe from the equator to polar regions in saltwater habitats.
Rationale for Nominal Species or Physiognomic Features:
Classification Comments: No Data Available
Similar NVC Types:
S13 Freshwater Aquatic Vegetation, note:
Physiognomy and Structure: Submerged or floating aquatic plants and/or macroalgae usually dominate the vegetation, with <10% of the surface water area occluded by standing emergent or woody plants. Macroalga may be common. Open surface water at a range of depths is present for all or most of the year.
Dynamics: No Data Available
Environmental Description: Saltwater Aquatic Vegetation occurs in deeper waters of wetlands or in shallow open-water habitats that are transitional along the coast between the intertidal salt marshes or other intertidal areas, and permanent, deep-water oceans. Water levels may be influenced by intertidal periods. More rarely, they occur as floating vegetation in shallow zones of deep oceans or in inland saline habitats with permanent water. The lower limits of salinity for this formation are set at 0.5 ppt, below which aquatic vegetation is considered freshwater.
Synonomy: >< Shallow Water Wetland Class (National Wetlands Working Group 1997) [The authors include both saltwater aquatic and freshwater aquatic vegetation in their concept and restrict the type to wetland aquatic vegetation, whereas the concept used here could extend to deeper water habitats.]
Concept Author(s): Hierarchy Revisions Working Group, Federal Geographic Data Committee (Faber-Langendoen et al. 2014)
Author of Description: D. Faber-Langendoen, C. Lea, K. Goodin
Version Date: 17Oct2014