Seaweeds and rocky shores of the Outer Hebrides
The paper reviews the literature on the ecology of the rocky shores, on the seaweeds in particular, and includes a full list of all seaweeds recorded in the islands with their distribution by island (264 species are recorded and this is about 38% of the British total). Thus the seaweed flora is rich and diverse; the presence of selected species is discussed. The large brown seaweeds grow very luxuriantly in the Outer Hebrides and have been used by man there for many centuries. The history of this utilization is briefly reviewed. The fucoids and Laminaria spp were formerly used extensively as a source of alkalis and iodine. Nowadays very large tonnages of Ascophyllum are regularly harvested for the production of alginates; quantities of cast up Laminaria hyperborea are also used for this purpose.