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Order Gigartinales

Family Solieriaceae

Callophycus tridentifer Kraft 1984: 61,65,67, figs 33-47, 52.

Thallus brownish- to pinkish-red (darkening on drying), erect, up to 20 cm tall, cartilaginous. Discoid holdfast gives rise to a single primary axis bearing up to 4 orders of compound, more-or-less opposite pinnae; fronds slightly compressed, 1-3 mm wide, pinnae and pinnules arising at angles of 30-45o, crowded, apices tridentate (3-pronged). In cross-section of lower axis, medulla 500-600 µm wide, comprising inner zone of sparse rhizoids surrounded by layer of dense rhizoids. Inner cortex 1-2 cells deep, cells isodiametric; outer cortex of 2-3 layers of radially elongate cells, surface cells 7-12 µm long, 5-8 µm wide. Mature cystocarps large, embedded in branches, ostiolate. Tetrasporangia embedded in outer cortex, zonately divided.

Collections, ecology and regional distribution

Found from Port St Johns area to northern KZN, subtidal (46-58).

World distribution: First recorded from Australia (Kraft 1984) and later from South Africa by Norris and Aken (1985).

Type locality: Coffs harbour, NSW, Australia (Kraft 1984).

Note: Detailed description of this species in Kraft (1984); comparisons with South African specimens provided by Norris &Aken (1985).


Callophycus tridentifer, specimen from Trafalgar, southern KwaZulu-Natal (BOL).

Callophycus tridentifer, detail of branching.


References Callophycus tridentifer

Kraft G.T. 1984. Taxonomic and morphological studies of tropical and subtropical species of Callophycus (Solieriaceae, Rhodophyta). Phycologia 23: 53-71.

Norris R.E. & Aken M.E. 1985. Marine benthic algae new to South Africa. South African Journal of Botany 51(1): 55-65.


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 19 April 2024.