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Order Sphacelariales

Family Sphacelariaceae

Sphacelaria rigidula Kützing 1843: 292

Plants brown, tufted, up to ca. 5 mm high, fairly delicate, usually only branched (sparsely) near the apex. Main filaments ca. 25 µm in diameter, segments 25-40 µm long with 1-5 longitudinal cell walls visible. Branches narrow at base, widening distally.

Propagules comprising an elongate pedicel up to 300 µm long, with 2 equal arms with a wide angle between them containing one hemispherical cell; arms of varying length (to 300 µm ), rarely once-branched. Other reproductive structures not seen.

Collections, ecology and regional distribution

False Bay (Western Cape), eastwards along the whole South African coast to northern Kwazulu-Natal (17-58). Epilithic and epiphytic (e.g. on Codium) in the intertidal zone.

World distribution: cosmopolitan in tropical and warm-temperate seas (Guiry & Guiry 2012).

Type locality: Sinai, Red Sea (Guiry & Guiry 2012).


Sphacelaria rigidula, Kini Bay, near East London.

Sphacelaria rigidula, Vleesbaai, stained slide material.

Sphacelaria rigidula, young propagules.

Sphacelaria rigidula, propagules. Reproduced from Stegenga et al. (1997).


References Sphacelaria

Guiry, M.D. & Guiry, G.M. 2012. AlgaeBase. World-wide electronic publication, National University of Ireland, Galway.; searched January 2012.

Kützing, F.T. (1843). Phycologia generalis oder Anatomie, Physiologie und Systemkunde der Tange... Mit 80 farbig gedruckten Tafeln, gezeichnet und gravirt vom Verfasser. pp. [part 1]: [i]-xxxii, [1]-142, [part 2:] 143-458, 1, err.], pls 1-80. Leipzig: F.A. Brockhaus.

Stegenga, H., Bolton, J.J. and R. J. Anderson. 1997. Seaweeds of the South African west coast. Contributions from the Bolus Herbarium 18: 655 pp.


Cite this record as:

Anderson RJ, Stegenga H, Bolton JJ. 2016. Seaweeds of the South African South Coast.
World Wide Web electronic publication, University of Cape Town,; Accessed on 26 February 2024.