Electronic Flora of South Australia Species Fact Sheet

2.  ; Erythrotrichia ligulata Womersley, sp. nov.

Phylum Rhodophyta – Class Bangiophyceae – Order Compsopogonales – Family Erythrotrichiaceae

Thallus (Fig. 2E, F) with erect, simple, ligulate blades from a prostrate, more or less discoid, base; epiphytic on Heterozostera, Myriodesma and Codium. Basal disc (Fig. 2E) 400–800 µm across, of branched, radiating, closely adjacent filaments, monostromatic, margin irregular, cells with apical and intercalary divisions; cells 4–10 µm in diameter and 8–16 (–20) µm long, some with lobes extending into gaps between other disc cells; rhodoplasts poorly defined but with a central pyrenoid. Erect blades (Fig. 2F) arising from cells of disc, becoming 4–8 mm long and 200–600 µm broad, uniseriate for many cells from the base, then becoming biseriate and multiseriate in the ligulate monostromatic blades with more or less parallel margins, 20–34 cells broad with cells in distinct longitudinal and transverse rows. Cells (Fig. 2G) more or less isodiametric, 8–16 µm across below, 12–16 µm across above; rhodoplasts (Fig. 2H) single per cell, parietal and lobed to more or less stellate, with a pyrenoid.

Reproduction: Reproduction by monosporangia (Fig. 2G) cut off from most vegetative cells of mature erect blades (and from some basal disc cells) by a curved wall, subspherical to ovoid, 10–16 µm long.

Type from Wan-nambool, Vic., on Heterozostera, drift in harbour (Kraft, 1.ix.1971; holotype in AD, A39356).

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

Distribution: Only known from the type, a Later collection from Warrnambool, drift on Heterozostera (G. & L. Kraft, 28.x.1986; AD, A58647), from Cape Carnot, S. Aust., on Myriodesma harveyanum in the sublittoral fringe (Womersley, 8.i.1951; AD, A15102), and from Reminie, Tas., on Codium fragile in pools (Wollaston & Mitchell, 25.ii.1964; AD, A27507).

Taxonomic notes: E. ligulata agrees with Erythrotrichia in having a tapering uniseriate base to the ligulate blades which, however, arise from a basal disc, in having cells with more or less stellate rhodoplasts each with a pyrenoid, and in producing monosporangia by division of vegetative cells. It differs from related basal-disc species such as E. boryana (Montagne) Berthold (see Heerebout 1968, p. 150; Garbary et al. 1980b, p. 155) in having ligulate blades with cells in longitudinal and transverse rows. The superficially similar E. foliiformis South & Adams (1976) from New Zealand differs in having a multi-rhizoidal base, as does E. vexillaris (Montagne) Hamel (1929, p. 54) from the western tropical Atlantic Ocean (see also Taylor 1960, p. 292, pl. 41 figs 2,3).


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.

TAYLOR, W.R. (1960). Marine Algae of the eastern tropical and subtropical coasts of the Americas. (Univ. Mich. Press: Ann Arbor.)

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.

Illustration in Womersley Part IIIA, 1994: FIG. 2 E–H.

Figure 2 image

Figure 2   enlarge

Fig. 2. A–D. Erythrotrichia carnea (AD, A22609). A. A young filament. B. Base of an older filament, becoming 2-3 cells thick. C. Part of a filament with monosporangia. D. Cells each with a stellate rhodoplast and pyrenoid. E–H. Erythrotrichia ligulata (AD, A39356). E. Basal disc with lower parts of three erect filaments. F. A mature erect blade showing cell pattern in four positions. G. Cells of mature blade, with monosporangia. H. Cells, each with a rhodoplast and pyrenoid. I–L. Erythrotrichia foliiformis (AD, A43288). I. Thallus with basal rhizoids, cell arrangement in two positions, and small clusters of erect filaments. J. Cell arrangement in lower thallus. K. Cell arrangement in older thallus, with small groups of darkly staining cells and one cluster of short erect filaments. L. Cells, each with a rhodoplast and pyrenoid.

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