Glossary

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TermDefinition
Ecologically significant habitatHabitat of importance for the wider ecological processes, functions and species it supports (Anon, 2001).
Ecologically significant speciesA species that has a controlling influence on a community (Anon, 2001).
EcologyThe study of the inter-relationships between animals, plants and the non-living components of their environment, in their natural surroundings (Anon, 2001).
EcosystemA community of organisms and their physical environment interacting as an ecological unit (from Lincoln et al.1998). Usage can include reference to large units such as the North Sea down to much smaller units such as kelp holdfasts as "an ecosystem".
Ecosystem approachThe pursuit of a simultaneous understanding of the dynamics of all the populations in an ecosystem and their interactions with each other and their environment (Anon, 2001).
Ecosystem goods and servicesIndirect or direct benefits to human society that derive from the marine ecosystem. Examples would include food provision, nutrient cycling, gas and climate regulation (Defra, 2007).
Ecosystem managementA framework for maintaining the equilibrium between all the component parts of an ecosystem rather than focusing on individual parts of the ecosystem (Anon, 2001).
EndangeredIUCN Red List categories - a taxon is considered Endangered when it is not Critically endangered (q.v.) but is facing a very high risk of extinction in the wild in the near future (International Union for the Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources 1994) (cf. 'Extinct', 'Critically endangered', 'Vulnerable').
EndemicReferring to organisms that are confined to a particular area or geographical location (Prescott, 1969).
EnvironmentThe complex of biotic climatic, edaphic and other conditions which comprise the immediate habitat of an organism; the physical, chemical and biological surroundings of an organism at any given time. (cf. 'habitat') (from Lincoln et al., 1998).
Environmental Impact Assessment / Environmental AssessmentA process of predicting and evaluating an action's impacts on the environment, from which the conclusions are used as a tool in decision-making. It aims to minimize environmental degradation by giving decision-makers better information about the consequences which development actions could have on the environment, although it cannot, in itself, achieve that protection (based on Pritchard, 1993). An Environmental Assessment can be used to produce an Environmental Statement (ES). Cf. 'Environmental Statement' 'Strategic Environmental Assessment'.
Environmental sustainabilityThe control of current and future activities to prevent irreversible or other significant, long-term change to the environment or its dependent living resources (Anon, 2001).
EpibenthosAll organisms living on the surface of the seabed.
EstuaryA semi-enclosed coastal body of water which has a free connection with the open sea, and within which sea water is measurably diluted by fresh water derived from land drainage (Pritchard, 1967).
European Marine Site (EMS)A conservation area designated under the Habitats Directive (SAC) or the Birds Directive (SPA) (Anon, 2001).
Exclusive Economic ZoneIn international maritime law, an Exclusive Economic Zone is a sea zone extending from a state’s baselines over which the state has special rights over the exploration and use of marine resources. Generally, a state’s Exclusive Economic Zone extends 200 nautical miles (370.4 kilometres) out from the baselines, except where resulting points would be closer to another country (Defra, 2007).
ExtentIn conservation assessment - in identifying sites for protection, preference will be given to sites with larger examples of highly rated or rarer biotopes. It is also necessary to consider the size of site required to ensure that the unit to be managed is 'viable'.
ExtinctIUCN Red List categories - a taxon is 'extinct' when there is no reasonable doubt that the last individual has died (International Union for the Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources 1994). The term can be applied on a local or national basis as well as world-wide and is also used to refer to situations where it no longer exists from a particular point of view (for instance: 'functionally extinct'; 'commercially extinct'). Cf. 'Critically endangered', 'Endangered', 'Vulnerable'.

References

Allaby, A. & Allaby, M., ed., 1990. Concise Oxford dictionary of earth sciences. Oxford : Oxford University Press.

 

Anon., 2001. A glossary of Marine Nature Conservation and Fisheries. Countryside Council for Wales, Bangor. Available from <http://www.jncc.gov.uk/pdf/glossary.pdf>

 

Davies, J., Bennett, T.L., Covey, R., & Mills, D.J.L., 1990. A catalogue of coastal SSSI's with additional notes from published marine biological information. Volume 1. England . Joint Nature Conservation Committee, Peterborough , Nature Conservancy Council, CSD Report, no. 1022. [ Marine Nature Conservation Review Report , no. MNCR/OR/2.]

 

Defra, 2007. A Sea Change: A Marine Bill White Paper. London: Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs.

 

Dowrick, F.E., 1977. Submarine areas around Great Britain. Public Law, Spring 1977 10-28 .

 

Earll, R.C. & Pagett, R.M., 1984. A classification and catalogue of the sea lochs of the Western Isles. Nature Conservancy Council, CSD Report, no. 525.

 

European Commission, 1995. Interpretation manual of European Union Habitats. Version EUR12. Brussels; European Commission Directorate General XI.

 

Gaston, K.J., 1994. Rarity . (Population and Community Biology Series, No.13). London: Chapman & Hall.

 

GESAMP, 1995. Biological indicators and their use in the measurement of the condition of the marine environment. ( IMO/FAO/UNESCO/WMO/WHO/IAEA/UN/UNEP Joint Group of Experts on the Scientific Aspects of Marine Environmental Protection, GESAMP Reports and Studies No. 55.

 

Hiscock, K., 1985. Aspects of the ecology of rocky sublittoral areas. In The ecology of rocky coasts: essays presented to J.R. Lewis D.Sc , (ed. P.G. Moore & R. Seed), pp 290-328. London: Hodder and Stoughton.

 

Hiscock, K. & Mitchell, R., 1989. Practical methods of field assessment and conservation evaluation of nearshore/estuarine areas. In Developments in estuarine and coastal study techniques . EBSA 17th Symposium, (ed. J. McManus & M. Elliott), pp 53-55. Fredensborg: Olsen, & Olsen, for Estuarine & Brackish Water Sciences Association.

 

Holme, N.A. & MacIntyre, A.D., ed., 1984. Methods for the study of marine benthos 2nd edn. Oxfrod: Blackwell Scientific Publications, for International Biological Programee. [IBP Hanbook, no. 16].

 

IMO, 1991. Guidelines for the designation of Special Areas and the identification of Particularly Sensitive Sea Areas, International Maritime Organization (IMO) Assembly Resolution A.720(17) 6 November 1991, para. 3.1.2. London: International Maritime Organization.

 

International Union for the Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources, 1994. IUCN Red List Categories. Gland: Switzerland.

 

Lewis, J.R., 1964. The ecology of rocky shores . London : English Universities Press.

 

Lincoln , R.J., & Boxshall, G.A., 1987. The Cambridge illustrated dictionary of natural history. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

 

Lincoln, R., Boxshall, G. & Clark, P., 1998.  A dictionary of ecology, evolution and systematics (2nd ed.). Cambridge: Cambridge University of Press.

 

Makins, M. ed., 1991. Collins English dictionary. 3rd ed. Glasgow, Harper Collins.

 

Marine Life Information Network (MarLIN), 2007. Glossary. Available from <http://www.marlin.ac.uk/sah/glossary.php?simple=on>

 

Mills, E.L., 1969. The community concept in marine zoology, with comments on continua and instability in some marine communities: a review. Journal of the Fisheries Research Board of Canada, 26, 1415-1428.

 

Nature Conservancy Council, 1984. Nature conservation in Great Britain. Shrewsbury: Nature Conservancy Council.

 

OED, 1990. The Shorter Oxford English Dictionary. Oxford: Clarendon Press.

 

Pimm, S.L., 1984. The complexity and stability of ecosystems. Nature, 307, 321-326.

 

Prescott, G.W., 1969. The algae: a review. Sunbury-upon-Thames: T. Nelson and Sons Ltd.

 

Pritchard, D., 1993. Strategic Environmental Assessment. RSPB Conservation Review , 7 , 52-55.

 

Pritchard, D.W., 1967. What is an estuary: physical viewpoint. In Estuaries (ed. G.H. Lauf), 3-5. Washington; American Association for the Advancement of Science [AAAS Publication, no. 83].

 

Raffaelli, D. & Hawkins, S., 1996. Intertidal ecology. London: Chapman & Hall.

 

Steigeler, S.E. ed., 1976. Dictionary of earth sciences. London: Macmillan.