dejayM's picture

Marine highways

Observed: 6th April 2013 By: dejayM
Biological Recording In ScotlandHighland Biological Recording GroupOrkney Biodiversity Records Centre
dejayM’s reputation in InvertebratesdejayM’s reputation in InvertebratesdejayM’s reputation in InvertebratesdejayM’s reputation in Invertebrates
Spaghetti J

Tracks and trails of Common and Flat Periwinkle.
One abandoned vehicle...
One often sees these trails underwater too.
Forensic pursuit usually leads to the hiding animal.

Species interactions

No interactions present.


dejayM's picture


gramandy's picture

you need to be careful... a lot of these highways can be limpet trails as well and looking at your first pic I would say there is evidence of this. I'd be cautious and include limpet into your ID.

dejayM's picture


Thanks Graham
But I won't do that (include Limpet) because I'm convinced that THESE are periwinkles. I will of course be cautious!
No limpet in its right mind would track far from its personal home, nor through sand. True they are great movers but usually only to graze.

gramandy's picture


...wil move quite some distance as it grows to secure a better niche on the rocks. See this posting of limpet movements on chalk reef but they also crossed sand pockets. No limpet was particularly near to this area of movement.

Interestingly experiments have been done to mark off areas of no go areas for the limpets and the fucoids are prolific here.

You are probably right that these are Littorina trails.


dejayM's picture

yes and no

Your is a delight. But I have placed new evidence there for your appraisal.
I saw the clear evidence here for movements and barred access(to grazers)
but knew of it before. If you didn't watch, perhaps you should.
The huge difference of course is that Limpets usually move to graze and periwinkles to hide.

ChrisMcA's picture

NB winkles are "grazing

NB winkles are "grazing herbivores" too. But this 'winkle' art should surely be in the Tate modern!

dejayM's picture


It would be a hanging offence (got it?) to mix iSpot with Art!
But yes, from time to time I shall hang others.
Dog whelks and Limpets are artists too.