Electronic Flora of South Australia Species Fact Sheet

Kallymenia rubra Womersley & Norris 1971: 13, figs 26–31, 86.

Phylum Rhodophyta – Class Florideophyceae – Order Gigartinales – Family Kallymeniaceae

Thallus (Fig. 74A) dark red, foliose, with a short stipe (to 0.5 cm long), irregularly lobed or dissected with an erose-undulate margin and in some surface areas small excrescences, 4–12 cm high and as much across; thallus robust and tough, adhering to paper. Holdfast discoid, 1–2 mm across; epilithic. Structure. Thallus (Fig. 75A) 150–400 µm thick, consisting of 3–4 compact layers of cortical cells (many with ovoid, highly refractive inclusions) and a central medulla of dense filaments 4–10 µm in diameter, with conspicuous moderately staining refractive cells with long arms (Fig. 75B); outer cortical cells densely arranged, 4–6 µm across and irregular in shape in surface view, palisade-like in cross section of thallus.

Reproduction: Carpogonial branch systems monocarpogonial (Fig. 75C), with a somewhat lobed supporting cell bearing two elongate, simple, subsidiary cells and a carpogonial branch with a similar basal cell and a smaller but similar second cell. Fusion cell (Fig. 75E) about 100 µm across, relatively slender with numerous branched lobes, producing several connecting filaments directly from the lobes. Auxiliary cell systems (Fig. 75D)

Type from Elliston, S. Aust., drift (Norris 1665 & Womersley, 27.ii.1959); holotype in AD, A22164.

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

Distribution: Only known from the type and a probable specimen from Waldegrave I. (near Elliston), S. Aust., 22 m deep (Shepherd, 17.iv.1970; AD, A35870).

Taxonomic notes: relatively small, 11–24 µm across, consisting of an auxiliary cell bearing 3–4 subsidiary cells which are at first spherical but later elongate to twice as long as thick; gonimoblast tissue formed from auxiliary cell following fusion with a connecting filament (Fig. 75F). Cystocarps unknown.

Male and tetrasporangial thalli unknown.

K. rubra is related to K. tasmanica in its form and monocarpogonial nature but differs in its more compact, tougher thallus with an erose-undulate margin and more densely filamentous cortex, in possessing distinct auxiliary cell systems, and in the morphology of the carpogonial branch systems and fusion cells. Further study of the relationships of K. rubra is desirable.


WOMERSLEY, H.B.S. & NORRIS, R.E. (1971). The morphology and taxonomy of Australian Kallymeniaceae (Rhodophyta). Aust. J. Bot. Suppl. 2, pp. 1–62.

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.

Illustrations in Womersley Part IIIA, 1994: FIGS 74A, 75 A–F.

Figure 74 image

Figure 74   enlarge

Fig. 74. A. Kallymenia rubra (AD, A22164). Habit. B. Kallymenia spinosa (AD, A33660). Habit. C, D. Glaphyrymenia pustulosa (AD, A35823). C. Habit. D. Transverse section of thallus with cystocarp. [B, D as in Womersley & Norris 1971.]

Figure 75 image

Figure 75   enlarge

Fig. 75. A–F. Kallymenia rubra (AD, A22164). A. Transverse section of thallus with young carpogonial branch system. B. Stellate cell. C. Mature carpogonial branch system. D. Auxiliary cell system. E. Fusion cell producing connecting filaments. F. Fusion of connecting filament with auxiliary cell and formation of gonimoblast cells. G–K. Kallymenia spinosa (AD, A33660). G. Surface of thallus with spines. H. Transverse section of thallus. I. Young carpogonial branch system. J. Mature carpogonial branch system. K. Auxiliary cell system. L-0. Glaphyrymenia pustulosa (AD, A35823). L. Transverse section of thallus with tetrasporangia. M. Stellate cell. N. Carpogonial branch system. 0. Auxiliary cell system. [A–M after Womersley & Norris 1971.]

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