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Electronic Flora of South Australia Species Fact Sheet

Chaetomorpha linum (Müller) Kützing 1843: 204.

Phylum Chlorophyta – Order Cladophorales – Family Cladophoraceae

Selected citations: Kornmann 1969a: 223; 1972: 2, figs 1–4. Valet 1960: 83, fig. 3b. Womersley 1956: 357.

Thallus (Pl. 13 fig. 2; Fig. 54D) medium to dark green, fairly rigid, loose-lying as entangled masses or long strands of single, curved, filaments amongst other algae in sheltered habitats of the lower eulittoral or uppermost sublittoral. Filaments without attachment cells, of similar diameter throughout (Fig. 57A). Cells (200–) 240–400 µm in diameter and L/B (0.5–) 0.7–1 (–1.5), not or only very slightly incised at the cross walls; wall 5–10 µm thick. Chloroplasts moderately to densely reticulate and lobed, with numerous pyrenoids.

Reproduction: Reproduction not reported for Australian material. In Europe, with gametophytic and sporophytic phases (Kornmann 1972).

Type from Lolland, Denmark (probably lost).

Selected specimens: Kellidie Bay, Coffin Bay, S. Aust., 3 m deep (Womersley, 5.xii.1975; ADU, A46807) and low eulittoral (Womersley, 22.viii.1967; ADU, A31820-"Marine Algae of southern Australia" No. 2). Port Adelaide, S. Aust., 10–20 cm deep on pontoons (Womersley, 10.iii.1982; ADU, A52981). Port MacDonnell, S. Aust., drift in harbour ( Womersley, 15.v.1982; ADU, A53159-"Marine Algae of southern Australia" No. 2a). Nelson lagoon, Vic. (Beauglehole, 10.v.1959; ADU, A24672).

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

Distribution: Widespread.

In southern Australia, from Walpole Inlet and probably the west cost of W. Aust. to Nelson Lagoon, Vic. and probably further east, in calm water bays and lagoons.

Taxonomic notes: Some authors (e.g. Christensen 1957) place Ch. linum as a synonym of Ch. aerea, but others (e.g. Blair, Mathieson & Cheney 1982, p. 171) consider them to be distinct species.


BLAIR, S.M., MATHIESON, A.C. & CHENEY, D.P. (1982). Morphological and electrophoretic investigations of selected species of Chaetomorpha (Chlorophyta; Cladophorales). Phycologia 21, 164–172.

CHRISTENSEN, T. (1957). Chaetomorpha linum in the attached state. Bot. Tidsskr. 53, 311–316.

KÜTZING, F.T. (1843). Phycologia generalis. (Leipzig.)

KORNMANN, P. (1969a). Characterization of the Chaetomorpha-species of Helgoland and List/Sylt. Proc. Intl Seaweed Symp. 6, 223–224.

KORNMANN, P. (1972). Ein Beitrag zur Taxonomie der Gattung Chaetomorpha (Cladophorales, Chlorophyta). Helgoländer wiss. Meeresunters, 23, 1–31.

VALET, G. (1960). Les Chaetomorpha de la région de Montpellier-sète. Nat. Monspeliensia Ser. Bot. 12, 81–88.

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: PLATE 13 fig. 2; FIGS 54D, 57A.

Plate 13 image

Plate 13   enlarge

PLATE 13 Fig. 1. Chaetomorpha coliformis. Robe, S. Aust., from the upper sublittoral, Sept. 1981;
Fig. 2. Chaetomorpha linum. Port MacDonnell, S. Aust., drift (ADU, A53159 collection);
Fig. 3. Dictyosphaeria sericea. Victor Harbor, S. Aust., 1 m deep (ADU, A53381 collection). (Photo by A.C.U.E.)
Fig. 4. Codium galeatum (lower), C. mamillosum (upper left) and C. capitulatum (upper right). Elliston, S. Aust.

Figure 54 image

Figure 54   enlarge

Fig. 54. A. Chaetomorpha coliformis (ADU, A53158). B. Chaetomorpha aerea (ADU, A52987). C. Chaetomorpha melagonium (ADU, A24699). D. Chaetomorpha linum (ADU, A53201).

Figure 57 image

Figure 57   enlarge

Fig. 57. Parts of filaments of A. Chaetomorpha linum (ADU, A52981). B,C. Chaetomorpha B. (ADU, A13745). C. (ADU, A6766). D. Chaetomorpha valida (ADU, A5668). E,F. Chaetomorpha capillaris (ADU, A 12783). G. Chaetomorpha indica (ADU, A 13756).

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