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Order Ceramiales

Family Rhodomelaceae

Pterosiphonia cloiophylla (C.Agardh) Falkenberg in Schmitz & Falkenberg 1897: 443

Plants dark red to brown or black, varying in size from short (2 cm) turfs to larger (to 20 cm) and more individual plants. Thallus pinnate, compressed; main axis prominent, up to 1.5 mm wide, alternately branched with laterals arising every 2-4 segments, laterals re-branched 2-3 times. Segments with 5 (-6) pericentral cells, heavily corticated, segmentation obscured in older parts. Laterals confluent with main axis for proximal 2-3 segments. Vegetative trichoblasts absent. Tetrasporangia in apparently rectilinear series in apical parts of laterals; up to 80 µm in diameter, with two long and one short cover cell. Antheridial stands cylindro-conical, sub-apical on laterals; male trichoblasts lacking sterile parts. Cystocarps globose, subapical on laterals.

Collections, ecology and regional distribution

Recorded from the whole west and south coasts to the Port Edward area of KwaZulu-Natal (1-48). Common in the lower eulittoral and shallow sublittoral zones in exposed and semi-exposed areas, often in turfs and sometimes forming a zone at the low tide level.

World distribution: Namibia, Amsterdam and St. Paul Islands, Oman, Pakistan (Guiry & Guiry 2011).

Type locality: Cape of Good Hope, South Africa (Silva et al. 1996).


Pterosiphonia cloiophylla.

Pterosiphonia cloiophylla showing cortication to near tips.

Pterosiphonia cloiophylla , cystocarps.

Pterosiphonia cloiophylla, antheridial stands.

Pterosiphonia cloiophylla , cross-section showing cortication, axial cell and pericentral cells.

Pterosiphonia cloiophylla . 1. Habit. 2. Cross section of main axis. 3. Tetrasporiferous thallus apex. 4. Tetrasporangia. Reproduced from Stegenga et al. (1997).


References Pterosiphonia cloiophylla

Guiry, M.D. & Guiry, G.M. 2011. AlgaeBase. World-wide electronic publication, National University of Ireland, Galway.; searched August 2011.

Schmitz, F. & Falkenberg, P. 1897. Rhodomelaceae. In: Die natürlichen Pflanzenfamilien nebst ihren Gattungen und wichtigeren Arten insbesondere den Nutzpflanzen unter Mitwirkung zahlreicher hervorragender Fachgelehrten, Teil 1, Abteilung 2. (Engler, A. & Prantl, K. Eds), pp. 421-480. Leipzig: verlag von Wilhelm Engelmann.

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. & 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 02 March 2024.