European beach or coast line biodiversity identification guides

Hello everyone,

My 1 week summer vacation at the beach here in Portugal made me photograph a lot of coastal wildlife. From fishes to crabs, going through mussels, oisters, star fish, etc, I’ve photographed a bit of everything.

The thing is: now I need to ID them. I tried looking for guides or identification keys for the different groups, but I haven’t found any.

Does anyone know any good guides for European coast-line biodiveristy? (my main priorities are mussels, starfish and limpets, but I’m open to all suggestions)

Thank you all in advance!

Following this topic in the hope of good recommendations - I’ll be going up to Scotland in a couple of weeks, and I plan to do some beachcombing. Also, if anyone knows of a good guide to seaweeds, please give me a link. Thanks.

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Not seaweeds, but the Collins Complete Guide to British Coastal Wildlife is probably a good place to start, and the guides on this page are worth looking into.

The Seaweeds of Britain and Ireland is probably worth getting a copy of.

Here’s an online copy of A Field Guide to the British Seaweeds.


This maybe is not what you are looking for, but a complement (published by spanish goverment).
IBERFAUNA. Banco de dados da fauna ibérica

And a reference of a book:
Maybe you can find a specialised library around?¿


Thank you!

Thank you very much! I didn’t know IBERFAUNA, it will be a helpfull resource.

As for the book, I wasn’t sure it was still available for purchase. But I contacted the library and it still is!


I have found the Collins Pocket Guide Sea Shore of Britain and Europe useful in the past - it’s a good introductory guide and covers most of the commoner species.

If you want to go up a level, perhaps you can get hold of A Student’s Guide to the Seashore (authors Fish & Fish) through a library or secondhand. Otherwise it is quite pricey.


For the dutch coastline I advise Zeeboek

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Thank you very much! I’ll try to find any of the two

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