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Hymenocladia chondricola (Sonder) J. Lewis 1994: 9, figs 7–10.

Phylum Rhodophyta – Class Florideophyceae – Order Rhodymeniales – Family Rhodymeniaceae


Halymenia chondricola Sonder 1845: 57; 1848: 172; 1881: 13. J. Agardh 1851: 206. De Toni 1905: 1552. Harvey 1863, synop.: xlvi. Kützing 1849: 717; 1866: 33, pl. 92a-d.

Rhodymenia polymorpha Harvey 1859b: 319; 1860: pl. 157.

Hymenocladia polymorpha (Harvey) J. Agardh 1871: 453; 1876: 315. De Toni 1900b: 504. De Toni & Forti 1923: 29, pl. 3 figs 2, 3. Guiler 1952: 94. Kylin 1931: 25. Lucas 1929b: 49. Lucas & Perrin 1947: 198, fig. 64. May 1965: 387. Reinbold 1897: 52. Sonder 1881: 17. Sparling 1957: 367. Tisdall 1898: 506. Wilson 1892: 179. Womersley 1950: 176.

Rhodymenia pinnulata Zanardini 1874: 500. De Toni 1900b: 521.

Thallus (Fig. 45A, B) medium to dark red, fading to yellow-red, (5–) 10–50 cm high, complanately branched, foliose and often marginally proliferous in an irregular to regular manner with proliferations simple and 1–3 cm long to branched similarly to the main axes. Axes and main branches (1–) 2–8 (–10) cm broad, 350–1000 (–1400) µm thick (margins usually thicker), small or relatively large surface proliferations occasional. Holdfast discoid, 1–4 mm across; epiphytic on Amphibolis and various robust algae (e.g. Acrocarpia) or epizoic, or epilithic. Structure multiaxial, developing a cortex (Fig. 45C, F) 2–3 cells broad, outer cells ovoid and 4–6 µm in diameter, grading fairly sharply to a medulla (Fig. 45F) mostly 300–750 µm and 4–10 cells across, larger cells ovoid and 90–170 µm in diameter, walls 5–25 µm thick, with frequent to abundant interspersed smaller ovoid cells or filaments 25–50 µm in diameter; secondary pit-connections frequent, hairs in clusters. Rhodoplasts elongate, in chains or ribbon like in inner cells.

Reproduction: Gametangial thalli dioecious. Carpogonial and auxiliary cell branches not observed. Carposporophytes (Fig. 45C) with a basal, branched, fusion cell complex, with upper cells all forming ovoid carposporangia 45–75 µm in diameter, with later lobes developing. Basal nutritive tissue (Fig. 45C) prominent, erect filaments disintegrating apart from thick-walled remnants near the nutritive tissue. Cystocarps scattered on the surface, protruding, hemispherical, 0.8–1.2 mm in diameter, pericarp 180–300 µm and 8–14 cells thick, inner cells ovoid (innermost stellate), ostiolate. Spermatangia in extensive sori (Fig. 45D), cut off from elongate initials (L/D 6–10) on cortical cells (Fig. 45E), ovoid, 2–3 µm in diameter.

Tetrasporangia (Fig. 45F) scattered, transformed from intercalary outer medullary cells, subspherical to ovoid, 70–100 µm in diameter, tetrahedrally divided.

Type from W. Aust. (Preiss); holotype in MEL, 502376.

Selected specimens: Port Denison, W. Aust., drift (Womersley, 31.viii.1947; AD, A5860). Point Peron, W. Aust., drift (Royce 886, 2.i.1951; AD, A15472). Elliston, S. Aust., drift (Womersley, 27.ii.1959; AD, A22205). Topgallant I., S. Aust., 35 m deep on Pyura (Branden, 2.vii.1987; AD, A57569). Wanna, S. Aust., drift (Womersley, 19.ii.1959; AD, A22414). Between Hopkins and Thistle Is, S. Aust., 6–9 m deep (Baldock, 1.i.1964; AD, A27114). Brown Beach, Yorke Pen., S. Aust., drift (Womersley, 13.iv.1963; AD, A26636). Port Elliot, S. Aust., drift (Womersley, 28.v.1994; AD, A63565). Pelorus Islet, S of Kangaroo I., S. Aust., 10–30 m deep on Acrocarpia (Branden, 19.vi.1991; AD, A61398). Vivonne Bay, Kangaroo I., S. Aust., drift (Womersley, 2.i.1949; AD, A10670). Seal Bay, Kangaroo I., S. Aust., drift (Womersley, 29.x.1966; AD, A31016). Pennington Bay, Kangaroo I., S. Aust., reef edge (Womersley, 5.i.1947; AD, A4370). Robe, S. Aust., drift (Womersley, 15.iv.1994; AD, A63543). Stinky Bay, Nora Creina, S. Aust., drift (Womersley, 14.iii.1991; AD, A61181). Port MacDonnell, S. Aust., drift on Amphibolis (Womersley, 18.ix.1993; AD, A63025). Dutton Bay, Portland, Vic., drift (Womersley, 13.iv.1959; AD, A22695). Queenscliff, Vic., drift (Womersley, 8.iv.1959; AD, A22853). Walkerville, Vic., drift (Sinkora A2297, 7.iii.1976; AD, A48498). Low Head, Tas., (Perrin, 19.iii.I945; AD, A8505). Fluted Cape, Bruny I., Tas., 16 m deep (Shepherd, 14.ii.1972; AD, A41829).

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

Distribution: Port Denison, W. Aust., to Walkerville, Vic., and around Tasmania.

Taxonomic notes: The holotype sheet of H. chondricola consists of two small fragments about 4 cm high, of the species commonly known as H. polymorpha. This species is extremely variable in form, from broad, occasionally divided plants to regularly pinnate ones, with main axes 1–10 cm broad. However, the branches are always distinctly broader than those of H. usnea.

The holotype of H. polymorpha, from Georgetown, Tas. (Harvey), is in Herb. Harvey, TCD. This is the only specimen of Harvey's Alg. Aust. Exsicc. 3831 in TCD.

The lectotype of Rhodymenia pinnulata Zanardini, from Georgetown, Tas. (Goodwin), is in Herb. Zanardini, Museo Civico di Storia Naturale, Venice. It is a large, pinnately branched specimen of H. chondricola.

The New Zealand H. sanguinea (Harvey) Sparling and H. lanceolata J. Agardh are within the range of form shown by H. chondricola, and are to be considered as synonyms, following Sparling (1957, p. 370) and Chapman & Dromgoole (1970, p. 117).


AGARDH, J.G. (1851). Species Genera et Ordines Algarum. Vol. 2, Part 1, I-XII, 1–336 + index. (Gleerup: Lund.)

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

AGARDH, J.G. (1876). Species Genera et Ordines Algarum. Vol. 3, Part 1 — Epicrisis systematis Floridearum, pp. i-vii, 1–724. (Weigel: Leipzig.)

CHAPMAN, V.J. & DROMGOOLE, F.I. (1970). The marine algae of New Zealand, Part III: Rhodophyceae. Issue 2: Florideophycidae: Rhodyméniales, pp. 115–154, Plates 39–50. (Cramer: Germany.)

DE TONI, G.B. & FORTI, A. (1923). Alghe di Australia, Tasmania e Nouva Zelanda. Mem. R. Inst. Veneto Sci., Lett. Arti 29, 1–183, Plates 1–10.

DE TONI, G.B. (1900b). Sylloge Algarum omnium hucusque Cognitarum. Vol. 4. Florideae. Sect. 2, pp. 387–776. (Padua.)

DE TONI, G.B. (1905). Sylloge Algarum omnium hucusque Cognitarum. Vol. 4. Florideae. Sect. 4, pp. 1523–1973. (Padua.)

GUILER, E.R. (1952). The marine algae of Tasmania. Check List with localities. Pap. Proc. R. Soc. Tasm. 86, 71–106.

HARVEY, W.H. (1859b). Algae. In Hooker, J.D., The Botany of the Antarctic Voyage. HI Flora Tasmaniae. Vol. II, pp. 282–320. (Reeve: London.)

HARVEY, W.H. (1860). Phycologia Australica. Vol. 3, Plates 121–180. (Reeve: London.)

HARVEY, W.H. (1863). Phycologia Australica. Vol. 5, Plates 241–300, synop., pp. i-lxxiii. (Reeve: London.)

KÜTZING, F.T. (1849). Species Algarum. (Leipzig.)

KÜTZING, F.T. (1866). Tabulae Phycologicae. Vol. 16. (Nordhausen.)

KYLIN, H. (1931). Die Florideenordnung Rhodyméniales. Lunds Univ. Årsskr. N.F. Avd. 2, 27 (11), 1–48, Plates 1–20.

LEWIS, J.A. (1994). Transfer of the Australian red algae Kallymenia nitophylloides to Cryptonemia (Halymeniaceae) and Halymenia chondricola to Hymenocladia (Rhodymeniaceae). Taxon 43, 3–10.

LUCAS, A.H.S. & PERRIN, F. (1947). The Seaweeds of South Australia. Part 2. The Red Seaweeds. (Govt Printer: Adelaide.)

LUCAS, A.H.S. (1929b). A census of the marine algae of South Australia. Trans. R. Soc. S. Aust. 53, 45–53.

MAY, V. (1965). A census and key to the species of Rhodophyceae (red algae) recorded from Australia. Contr. N.S.W. natn. Herb. 3, 349–429.

REINBOLD, T. (1897). Die Algen der Lacepede und Guichen Bay und deren näherer Umgebung (Süd Australien), gesammelt von Dr. A. Engelhart-Kingston. Nuova Notarisia 8, 41–62.

SONDER, O.G. (1845). Nova Algarum genera et species, quas in itinere ad oras occidentales Novae Hollandiae, collegit L. Preiss, Ph.Dr. Bot. Zeit. 3, 49–57.

SONDER, O.W. (1848). Algae. In Lehmann, C., Plantae Preissianae. Vol. 2, pp. 161–195. (Hamburg.)

SONDER, O.W. (1881). In Mueller, F., Fragmenta Phytographiae Australiae. Supplementum ad volumen undecinum: Algae Australianae hactenus cognitae, pp. 1–42, 105–107. (Melbourne.)

SPARLING, S.R. (1957). The structure and reproduction of some members of the Rhodymeniaceae. Univ. Calif Pubis Bot. 29, 319–396.

TISDALL, H.T. (1898). The algae of Victoria. Rep. 7th Meet. Aust. Ass. Adv. Sci., Sydney, 1898, pp. 493–516.

WILSON, J.B. (1892). Catalogue of algae collected at or near Port Phillip Heads and Western Port. Proc. R. Soc. Vict. 4, 157–190.

WOMERSLEY, H.B.S. (1950). The marine algae of Kangaroo Island. III. List of Species 1. Trans. R. Soc. S. Aust. 73, 137–197.

ZANARDINI, J. (1874). Phyceae Australicae novae vel minus cognitae. Flora (Regensburg) 57, 486–490, 497–505.

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

Author: H.B.S. Womersley

Publication: Womersley, H.B.S. (28 June, 1996)
The Marine Benthic Flora of Southern Australia
Rhodophyta. Part IIIB. Gracilarialse, Rhodymeniales, Corallinales and Bonnemaisoniales
Reproduced with permission from The Marine Benthic Flora of Southern Australia Part IIIB 1996, by H.B.S. Womersley. Australian Biological Resources Study, Canberra. Copyright Commonwealth of Australia.

Illustration in Womersley Part IIIA, 1996: FIG. 45.

Figure 45 image

Figure 45   enlarge

Fig. 45. Hymenocladia chondricola (A, C, F, AD, A63025; B, D, E, AD, A61181). A. Habit. B. Habit, cystocarpic plant. C. Transverse section of thallus with cystocarp. D. Cortex with a spermatangial sorus. E. Detail of spermatangial sorus with elongate initials. F. Transverse section of thallus with tetrasporangia in inner cortical cells.

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