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Order Bryopsidales

Family Bryopsidaceae

Bryopsis africana Areschoug 1851: 5

Plants dark green, caespitose, forming clumps several cm wide and up to 5 cm high. Individual axes up to 300 (-400) µm wide narrowing slightly towards apex. Axes unbranched or branched, branching irregular, branches various lengths, polystichously arranged or often secundly arranged in short rows; branches seldom of second order. Usually some branches long (up to 20 mm), reaching level of the apex of main axis and imparting candelabrum-like outline. Branches about 200 µm wide; older branches producing descending rhizoids that impart felty texture to the plant.

Collections, ecology and regional distribution

Along the whole west coast and on the south coast as far as Kei Mouth (1-43). Found throughout the eulittoral zone, often as a sand-binding turf.

Syntype localities: False Bay and Saldanha Bay (Silva et al. 1996).

Note: We follow Stegenga et al. (1997) in including B. tenuis Levring in B. africana.


Bryopsis africana, exposed at low tide, Arniston

Bryopsis africana, detail of apical branches

Bryopsis africana, apices of erect filaments (reproduced from Stegenga et al. 1997).


References Bryopsis africana

Areschoug, J.E. (1851). Phyceae capenses, quarum particulam primam, venia ampliss. philos. facult. Upsaliens., praeside J. E. Areschoug... pro gradu philosophico p.p. Johannes Conradus Carlberg gothoburgensis. In auditorio Gustaviano die vii maj mdccli. H.A.M.S. pp. 1-32. Upsaliae [Uppsala]: excudebat Reg. Acad. Typographus.

Silva, P.C., Basson, P.W. & Moe, R.L. (1996). Catalogue of the benthic marine algae of the Indian Ocean. University of California Publications in Botany 79: 1-1259.

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.