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Cystophora racemosa (Harvey ex Kützing) J. Agardh 1871: 441; 1896: 48.

Phylum Phaeophyta – Order Fucales – Family Cystoseiraceae

Selected citations: Womersley 1964: 83, figs 24, 25, pl. 8 fig. 1.

Thallus (Fig. 137A) medium to dark brown, 40–100 cm long, with a robust primary axis, rigidly and openly complanately branched. Holdfast discoid-conical, 0.5–2 (–3) cm across, with a single primary axis; epilithic. Primary axes compressed, 2–4 (–6) mm broad and 1–2 mm thick, alternately distichously branched from the faces; secondary axes 10–30 cm long, 0.5–1 cm apart, retroflex; tertiary axes usually present; older secondary and tertiary axes and laterals readily lost leaving prominent scalariform residues 1–5 mm long. Laterals (Fig. 139C) 2–6 cm long, 1–3 mm apart on axes, rigid, alternately pinnate with simple, compressed, lanceolate ramuli 0.5–1.5 (–2) cm long and 1–2 mm broad, tapering to base and apex. Vesicles replacing basal 1 (–2) ramuli of laterals, rarely absent, spherical to slightly ovoid, 3–8 (–10) mm in diameter, mutic.

Reproduction: Thalli monoecious. Receptacles (Fig. 139C,D) simple, lanceolate, compressed, 0.5–3 cm long and 1.5–3 (–4) mm broad, margins smooth to slightly torulose. Conceptacles in two marginal rows with ostioles on the edges, bisexual or unisexual, with simple paraphyses; oogonia sessile, ovoid, 120–150 µm long and 80–120 µm in diameter; antheridia in apical clusters on branched paraphyses, ovoid, 25–35 µm long and 15–20 µm in diameter.

Type from Cape Riche, W. Aust. (Harvey, Alg. Aust. Exsicc. 5); in MEL, 598.

Selected specimens: Geographe Bay, W. Aust. (Herb. Sonder, MEL, 595). Cowaramup, W. Aust., drift (Gordon, 16.xi.1968; ADU, A33125). Point Valliant, Two People Bay, W. Aust., drift (Womersley, 30.viii.1979; ADU, A50962). Point Sinclair, S. Aust., drift (Womersley, 25.i.1951; ADU, A13900). Elliston, S. Aust., 5 m deep in bay (Shepherd, 13.v.1971; ADU, A38633). Brighton, S. Aust., drift ( Womersley, May 1944; ADU, A308). Seal Beach, Kangaroo I., S. Aust., drift ( Womersley, 21.viii.1963; ADU, A26739). Queenscliff, Vic. (Mueller; Herb. Agardh, LD).

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

Distribution: From Geographe Bay, W. Aust. around southern Australia to Kangaroo I., S. Aust. Queenscliff, Vic.

Taxonomic notes: C. racemosa differs from C. pectinata in dimensions, in the strongly compressed axes, and in the presence of vesicles. It is a deep water species of western affinities.


AGARDH, J.G. (1871). Om Chatham-Oarnes Alger. K. Vetensk Akad. Forschandl. 5, 435–456.

AGARDH, J.G. (1896). Analecta Algologica. Cont. III. Ada Univ. lund. 32, 1–140, Plate 1.

WOMERSLEY, H.B.S. (1964). The morphology and taxonomy of Cystophora and related genera (Phaeophyta). Aust. J. Bot. 12, 53–110, Plates 1–16.

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

Author: H.B.S. Womersley

Publication: Womersley, H.B.S. (14 December, 1987)
The Marine Benthic Flora of Southern Australia
Part II
©Board of the Botanic Gardens and State Herbarium, Government of South Australia

Illustrations in Womersley Part II, 1997: FIGS 137A, 139C,D.

Figure 137 image

Figure 137   enlarge

Fig. 137. A. Cystophora racemosa (ADU, A308). B. Cystophora botryocystis (ADU, A22309).

Figure 139 image

Figure 139   enlarge

Fig. 139. Receptacles of species of Cystophora. A,B. Cystophora pectinata (ADU, A13898). A. A pinnate lateral with ramuli. B. A receptacle. C,D. Cystophora racemosa (ADU, A26739). C. An axis with laterals. D. Lower part of a lateral with receptacles and a vesicle. E,F. Cystophora botryocystis (ADU, A26864). E. An axis, and laterals with crowded ramuli and basally clustered vesicles. F. Receptacles. G,H. Cystophora polycystidea (ADU, A26755). G. Two secondary axes with laterals. H. Receptacles on a lateral.

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