Electronic Flora of South Australia Genus Fact Sheet

Genus ERYTHROTRICHIA Areschoug 1850: 435, nom. cons.

Phylum Rhodophyta – Class Bangiophyceae – Order Compsopogonales – Family Erythrotrichiaceae

Thallus minute to a few mm high, of erect, simple filaments, uniseriate or becoming multiseriate, or slightly foliose or ligulate, attached by rhizoidal lobes of the basal cell, by a parenchymatous base, or (in two species) by rhizoids from the lower cells of the thallus; cell divisions diffuse, rhodoplasts single, stellate, with a central pyrenoid.

Reproduction: Reproduction by monospores from sporangia cut off from vegetative cells by a curved wall. Sexual reproduction known in Erythrotrichia carnea, with 3-celled gametophytes (see below).

Type species: E. ceramicola (Lyngbye) Areschoug 1850: 435.

Taxonomic notes: Whereas Dangeard (1968) recognised numerous species of Erythrotrichia, Heerebout (1968) recognised only three. Garbary et al. (1980b) recognise some 6 species, and a further species is described below. E. vexillaris (Montagne) Hamel (1929, p. 54, figs A-I), and E. foliiformis South & Adams (1976) from New Zealand, differ from all other species of the genus in having a multi-rhizoidal base, with rhizoids produced from numerous supra-basal cells.


ARESCHOUG, J.E. (1850). Phycearum, quae in maribus Scandinaviae crescunt, enumerato. Sectio posterior Ulvaceas continens. Ups. Soc. Sci. nova Acta, Ser. II, 14, 385–454.

DANGEARD, P. (1968). Recherches sur quelques Bangiophycées (Protofloridées). Botaniste 51, 5–57.

GARBARY, D.J., HANSEN, G.I. & SCAGEL, R.F. (1980b). The marine algae of British Columbia and northern Washington: Division Rhodophyta (red algae), Class Bangiophyceae. Syesis 13, 137–195.

HAMEL, G. (1929). Contribution a la flora algologique des Antilles. Ann. Crypt. Exot. 2, 53–58.

HEEREBOUT, G.R. (1968). Studies on the Erythropeltidaceae (Rhodophyceae - Bangiophycidae). Blumea 16, 139–157.

SOUTH, G.R. & ADAMS, N.M. (1976). Erythrotrichia foliiformis sp. nov. (Rhodophyta, Erythropeltidaceae) from New Zealand. J. Roy. Soc. N.Z. 6, 399–405.

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

Author: H.B.S. Womersley

Publication: Womersley, H.B.S. (14 January, 1994)
The Marine Benthic Flora of Southern Australia
Rhodophyta. Part IIIA, Bangiophyceae and Florideophyceae (to Gigartinales)
Reproduced with permission from The Marine Benthic Flora of Southern Australia Part IIIA 1994, by H.B.S. Womersley. Australian Biological Resources Study, Canberra. Copyright Commonwealth of Australia.


1. Thallus with unbranched, cylindrical filaments, uniseriate (or becoming a few cells thick), with single basal attachment cells or a loose multicellular disc

E. carnea

1. Thallus with unbranched, ligulate blades, becoming 10–50 cells broad, monostromatic, with a discoid or rhizoidal base


2. Thallus with a well-developed multicellular basal disc producing numerous blades, with cells in distinct transverse and longitudinal rows; epiphytic on Heterozostera

E. ligulata

2. Thallus of clustered blades each attached by numerous rhizoids, thallus cells becoming irregularly arranged; epiphytic on Lessonia

  3. E. foliiformis

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