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Electronic Flora of South Australia Species Fact Sheet

Pilinia novae-zelandiae (Chapman) Papenfuss & Fan ex Papenfuss 1962: 10.

Phylum Chlorophyta – Order Chaetophorales – Family Chroolepidaceae

Selected citations: South & Adams 1976: 18.


Sporocladopsis novae-zelandiae Chapman 1949: 496, fig. 4; 1956: 433, fig. 85. Cribb 1956: 183, pl. I figs 1–6, pl. 2 fig. 3.

Thallus (Fig. 41G,H) epiphytic on cartilaginous larger brown (and occasionally red) algae (e.g. Ecklonia, Durri//aea, Sargassum) forming initially small, irregularly circular patches which may later become confluent and form areas several cm across, yellow-green in colour and often drying somewhat brownish. Basal layer (Fig. 41G) of closely adjacent, branched, radiating filaments adherent to the host surface, without rhizoids, with cells 3–4 (–5) µm in diameter and L/B 2–4. Erect filaments arising from every cell of the basal filaments, without hairs; shorter filaments at first of one cell bearing a sporangium (Fig. 41G), later becoming up to 6 cells long, simple or branched, 4–5 µm in diameter and L/B 1.5–2.5; long filaments (Fig. 41H) 0.5–1.5 mm long, unbranched or with an occasional branch, cells 6–10 µm in diameter and L/B (1.5–) 2–3 (–4); chloroplast single, filling most of the cell and often somewhat lobed at the ends, with one (rarely two) pyrenoids.

Reproduction: Reproduction with ovoid to elongate-ovoid sporangia (Fig. 41G,H), borne terminally on the shorter erect filaments or laterally on the longer erect filaments, varying from occasional to dense (radially or often unilaterally arranged), 6–8 µm in diameter and 15–20 ,um long. Zooids (8–16) liberated through a terminal pore but of unknown nature.

Type from Bay of Islands, New Zealand; in AK (Chapman).

Selected specimens: Cape Carnot, S. Aust., on Myriodesma harveyanum, sublittoral fringe (Womersley, 8.i.1951; ADU, A15109). Port Elliot, S. Aust., on Ecklonia radiata, drift (Skinner, 7.ix.1976; ADU, A 50870) and on Sargassum, drift ( Woelkerling, 6.x.1967; ADU, A 32003). Pennington Bay, Kangaroo I., S. Aust., on Sargassum, sublittoral fringe (Womersley, 20.v.1945; ADU, A 2272). Bridgewater Bay, Vic., on Durvillaea potatorum, upper sublittoral (Womersley, 25.i.1967; ADU, A31769).

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

Distribution: New Zealand.

In southern Australia, from Elliston, S. Aust. to Bridgewater Bay, Vic. and Port Arthur, Tas., on Ecklonia radiata, Durvillaea potatorum, and occasionally on Macrocystis, Scytothalia, Myriodesma and Sargassum.

Taxonomic notes: Pilinia novae-zelandiae is a not uncommon epiphyte on larger brown algae, but detailed study of both its reproduction and its relationships with the type species are needed. The two distinct types of erect filaments, both bearing sporangia, may be adequate to separate it generically. The record of Beanland & Woelkerling (1982, p. 94) of this species from A vicennia pneumatophores in Spencer Gulf applies to a different taxon.


BEANLAND, W.R. & WOELKERLING, W.J. (1982). Studies on Australian mangrove algae: II. Composition and geographical distribution of communities in Spencer Gulf, South Australia. Proc. R. Soc. Vic. 94, 89–106.

CHAPMAN, V.J. (1949). Some new species and forms of marine algae from New Zealand. Farlowia 3, 495–698.

CHAPMAN, V.J. (1956). The marine algae of New Zealand. Part I. Myxophyceae and Chlorophyceae. J. Linn. Soc. Bot. 55 (360), 333–501, Plates 24–50.

CRIBB, A.B. (1956). Notes on marine algae from Tasmania. Pap. Proc. R. Soc. Tasm. 90, 183–188, Plates 1–3.

PAPENFUSS, G.F. (1962). On the circumscription of the Green Algal genera Ulvella and Pilinia. Phykos 1, 6–12.

SOUTH, G.R. & ADAMS, N.M. (1976). The marine algae of the Kaikoura coast-a list of species. Nail Mus. N.Z. Misc. Ser. 1, 1–17.

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

Illustration in Womersley Part I, 1984: FIG. 41G,H.

Figure 41 image

Figure 41   enlarge

Fig. 41. A–C. Ulothrix subflaccida. A. Upper part of filament (ADU, A 15399). B. Base of filament with elongate rhizoidal cell (ADU, A15399). C. Reproductive cells with zooids (ADU, A53176). D,E. Uronema marina. D. Filament with upper cell containing zooids (ADU, A51119). Dl. Terminal cell of young filament (ADU, A31827). E. Filament (ADU, A31827). F. Entocladia viridis. Thallus epiphytic on Cladophora rhizoclonioidea (ADU, A52871). G,H. Pilinia novae-zelandiae. G. Thallus on Sargassum, with terminal sporangia on short erect filaments (ADU, A32003). H. Part of a long erect filament with lateral sporangia (ADU, A50870).

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