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An urchin barren is an area of the subtidal where the population growth of sea urchins has gone unchecked, causing destructive grazing of kelp beds or kelp forests (specifically the giant brown bladder kelp, Macrocystis).
Despite their name, urchin barrens are usually abundant with marine invertebrate life, echinoderms in particular.3 Species such as the sunflower starfishes, brittle stars, and the purple sea urchin are common.
- Planet Earth (TV series) (2006). Shallow Seas (Television production). BBC Natural History Unit.
- Stewart, NL; Konar B. "Kelp Forests versus Urchin Barrens: Alternate Stable States and Their Effect on Sea Otter Prey Quality in the Aleutian Islands". Journal of Marine Biology 2012. doi:10.1155/2012/492308.
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