Electronic Flora of South Australia Species Fact Sheet

Caulerpa vesiculifera Harvey.

Phylum Chlorophyta – Order Caulerpales – Family Caulerpaceae

Selected citations: Lucas 1936: 47. Womersley 1956: 371.


C. simpliciuscula var. vesiculifera Harvey 1859a: pl. 65 figs 3,4.

C. ethelae Weber van Bosse 1898: 384, pl. 34 figs 5,6.

Stolon moderately robust, (1–) 2–3 mm in diameter, naked, epilithic. Erect fronds (Fig. 91D) medium to dark green with simple or often with several times branched axes, usually 8–25 (–35) cm high and 3–5 mm across, with axes 1–2 mm in diameter densely covered to their bases with vesiculate ramuli, 7–9 around the axes. Ramuli (Fig. 92F) with a slight to conspicuous, broadly conical, pedicel from the axis, ovoid above the constriction, (1–) 1.5–2.5 mm long and 0.7–1.5 mm in diameter.

Type from Western Port, Vic. (Harvey); in TCD.

Selected specimens: South Passage, Shark Bay, W. Aust., 5 m deep (Cambridge, 24.viii.1979; ADU, A51762). Point Peron, W. Aust., reef pools (Mitchell, 22.ix.1966; ADU, A30734). Elliston, S. Aust., in deep pools (Woelkerling, 16.v.1968; ADU, A32487-"Marine Algae of southern Australia" No. 13b). Cape du Couedic, Kangaroo I., S. Aust., shaded pools (Womersley, 16.i.1965; ADU, A28960). Flinders, Vic., upper sublittoral pools ( Womersley, 18.i.1967; ADU, A31800-"Marine Algae of southern Australia" No. 13a). Rocky Cape, Tas., drift (Gordon, 18.i.1966; ADU, A29939).

Distribution map based
on current data relating to
specimens held in the
State Herbarium of SA

Distribution: From Shark Bay, W. Aust. to Phillip I., Vic. and the north coast of Tas. in rock pools and the upper sublittoral on rough-water coasts; recorded to 25 m deep.

Taxonomic notes: C. vesiculifera is readily distinguished by the size of the vesicles and the protuberance from the axes before the constriction; in some specimens, however, this basal protuberance is relatively slight.


HARVEY, W.H. (1859a). Phycologia Australica. Vol. 2, Plates 61–120. (Reeve: London.)

LUCAS, A.H.S. (1936). The Seaweeds of South Australia. Pt. I. Introduction and the Green and Brown Seaweeds. (Govt Printer: Adelaide.)

WEBER van BOSSE, A. (1898). Monographie des Caulerpes. Ann. Jardin Bot. Buitenzorg 15, 243–401, Plates 20–34.

WOMERSLEY, H.B.S. (1956). A critical survey of the marine algae of southern Australia. I. Chlorophyta. Aust. J. mar. freshw. Res. 7, 343–383.

The Marine Benthic Flora of Southern Australia Part I complete list of references.

Author: H.B.S. Womersley

Publication: Womersley, H.B.S. (31 May, 1984)
The Marine Benthic Flora of Southern Australia
Part I
©Board of the Botanic Gardens and State Herbarium, Government of South Australia

Illustrations in Womersley Part I, 1984: FIGS 91D, 92F.

Figure 91 image

Figure 91   enlarge

Fig. 91. A. Caulerpa cactoides (ADU, A43586). B. Caulerpa racemosa var. laetevirens f. cylindracea (ADU. A50562). C. Caulerpa papillosa (ADV. A26451). D. Caulerpa vesiculifera (ADV. A32487). E. Caulerpa simpliciuscula (ADU, A32488).

Figure 92 image

Figure 92   enlarge

Fig. 92. A. Caulerpa geminata, ramuli on axis (ADU, A50951). B. Caulerpa annulata, ramuli on axis (ADU, A48232). C. Caulerpa cactoides, lower axis with ramuli, on stolon (ADU, A43586). D. Caulerpa racemosa var. laetevirens f. cylindracea, ramuli (ADU, A50562). E. Caulerpa papillosa, cross section of axis with ramuli (ADU, A26451). F. Caulerpa vesiculifera, cross section of axis with ramuli (ADU, A32487). G. Caulerpa simpliciuscula cross section of axis with ramuli (ADU, A32488).

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