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Order Ceramiales

Family Rhodomelaceae

Tayloriella tenebrosa (Harvey) Kylin 1938: 18-19, figs. 9A-C.

Plants blackish, differentiated in to prostrate and erect filaments, growing in turf-like clumps, up to about 50 mm tall. Prostrate axes attached by numerous rhizoids cut off from pericentral cells. Erect axes alternately branched, usually from every third segment; laterals simple or re-branched. Trichoblasts rare or absent in vegetative thalli. Segments with about 16 pericentral cells, uncorticated. Axes up to 250 µm in diameter, segments 0.5 – 1 times as long as broad. Tetrasporangia in rows in much-branched, often rather contorted laterals; 80 µm in diameter, with two long and one short cover cell. Antheridial stands cylindro-conical, subapical. Cystocarps subglobose, up to 1 mm in diameter.

Collections, ecology and regional distribution

Recorded from Doringbaai on the west coast to Mission Rocks/Cape Vidal (8-56). Common in algal turfs in the lower eulittoral zone, often sand-binding; also in intertidal pools.

World distribution: Also recorded from Angola (John et al. 2004) and Namibia (Rull Lluch 2002).

Type locality: Near Muizenberg, False Bay (Silva et al. 1996).

Note: Wynne (1985) discusses the relationship between members of the closely related genera Tayloriella and Pterosiphonia.


Tayloriella tenebrosa, Qologha (6 km east of Kei Mouth) (scale bar 1 mm).

Tayloriella tenebrosa, detail of apices.

Tayloriella tenebrosa, detail of pericentral cells.

Tayloriella tenebrosa, cross-section of axis.

Tayloriella tenebrosa, apical branching (stained slide).

Tayloriella tenebrosa, tetrasporangial branchlets.

Tayloriella tenebrosa, rhizoids arising from proximal ends of basal segments.

Tayloriella tenebrosa, detail of tetrasporangia.

Tayloriella tenebrosa. 1-2. Thallus apex (erect filaments). 3-4. Cross sections of main axis and branchlet respectively. 5. Tetrasporangia. Reproduced from Stegenga et al. (1997).


References Tayloriella tenebrosa

John, D.M., Prud'homme van Reine, W.F., Lawson, G.W., Kostermans, T.B. & Price, J.H. 2004. A taxonomic and geographical catalogue of the seaweeds of the western coast of Africa and adjacent islands. Beihefte zur Nova Hedwigia 127: 1-339, 1 fig.

Kylin, H. 1938. Verzeichnis einiger Rhodophyceen von Südafrika. Acta Universitatis Lundensis 34(8): 1-26, 10 figs, 8 plates.

Rull Lluch, J. 2002. Marine benthic algae of Namibia. Scientia Marina 66 (Supplement 3): 258 pp.

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.

Wynne, M.J. 1985. Two new species of Tayloriella (Rhodomelaceae, Rhodophyta) from the northeastern North Pacific. Journal of Phycology 21: 107-114.


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.