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Electronic Flora of South Australia Species Fact Sheet

Heterosiphonia crassipes (Harvey) Falkenberg 1901: 655.

Phylum Rhodophyta – Order Ceramiales – Family Dasyaceae

Selected citations: De Toni 1903: 1235. Huisman et al. 1990: 96. Huisman & Walker 1990: 428. Kendrick et al. 1990: 51. Lucas 1912: 159. Lucas & Perrin 1947: 318. May 1965: 382. Millar 1990: 437, fig. 61A–C. Millar


& Kraft 1993:44. Silva et al. 1996: 440.

Dasya crassipes Harvey 1855a: 543. J. Agardh 1863: 1198; 1890a: 86. Harvey 1863, synop.: xxiv. Kützing 1864: 26, pl. 72d-e. Sonder 1881: 36.

Baillouviana crassipes (Harvey) Kuntze 1891: 885.

Thallus (Fig. 226A) medium red-brown to grey-red, erect, with one to numerous axes 300–800 µm in diameter below with few lateral branches but densely clothed above with slender, plumose, pseudolaterals, lower pseudolaterals coarse and terminally acute; base of axes becoming heavily corticated and with outer anticlinal filaments 200–500 µm long. Holdfast becoming massive, rhizoidal, 2–30 mm across; epilithic. Structure. Apices of axes sympodial and distichous, developing 10–11 pericentral cells (Fig. 226B) commencing several cells below apical cells. Pseudolaterals (Fig. 226D) 2 segments apart, of 2 differing forms; upper pseudolaterals 3–5 mm long, each with 4–5 lower subdichotomies 2–4 cells apart and with upper unbranched monosiphonous ends 12–18 cells long, cells tapering (Fig. 226D, E) from 60–80 µm to 15–20 µm in diameter and L/D 2–3 to 6–8; the basal subdichotomous segments become polysiphonous and 100–200 µm in diameter, L/D 0.5–1; lower pseudolaterals (Fig. 226D, E) 2–3 mm long, with basal segments 300–500 µm in diameter and L/D 0.4–0.7, monosiphonous upper branches 100–200 µm in diameter, cells L/D 0.8–1, tapering over the last 3–5 cells to an acute apex. Cortication of lower axes by cells cut off the pericentral cells, with rhizoidal filaments developing a pseudoparenchymatous cortex 5–8 cells thick, with outer anticlinal filaments (Fig. 226B) 250–400 µm and 8–15 cells long, cells 35–45 µm in diameter and L/D 0.7–1. Rhodoplasts discoid.

Reproduction: Gametophytes unknown.

Tetrasporangial stichidia occur as terminal branches of pseudolaterals, with a polysiphonous stalk and short blunt apex, lanceoid to cylindrical, 180–600 µm long and 120-

Type from Rottnest I., W. Aust., on jetty reef (Harvey); lectotype in Herb. Harvey, TCD (Alg. Aust. Exsicc. 213A), Tray. Set 189 not located.

Selected specimens: Point Clune, Rottnest I., W. Aust., 13–14 m deep (Walker, 6.xii.1984; AD, A50637). Point Peron, W. Aust.. upper sublittoral on reef (Parsons, 15.xi.1968; AD, A32940). Pearson I., S. Aust., 30–35 m deep (Shepherd, 7.i.1969; AD, A34148).

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

Distribution: Rottnest I., W. Aust., Coffs Harbour and Sydney Harbour, N.S.W. and Lord Howe I. (Millar 1990, p. 437).

Taxonomic notes: 180 µm in diameter, segments with several tetrasporangia 30–40 µm in diameter and 2 cover cells, each dividing horizontally.

H. crassipes was recorded from Coffs Harbour and Sydney Harbour, N.S.W., and from Lord Howe I., by Millar (1990, p. 437) and may be more widespread around northern Australia than records indicate. It apparently occurs from shallow to deep water. Further study is needed to clarify the change from stout, abruptly terminally tapering, lower pseudolaterals to upper slender and gradually tapering ones (both types occuring on single plants), and also to discover gametophytes. The only tetrasporangia] specimen seen is the lectotype.

H. multiceps (Harvey) Falkenberg (1901, p. 654), also from Rottnest I., is closely related to H. crassipes, having largely ecorticate axes with 10–11 pericentral cells and a corticate base; it differs in having a few cortical cells cut off over the nodes of the axial segments. Further studies on Rottnest I. material are needed to clarify the species.


AGARDH, J.G. (1863). Species Genera et Ordines Algarum. Vol. 2, Part 3, pp. 787–1291. (Gleerup: Lund.)

AGARDH, J.G. (1890a). Till algernes systematik. Acta Univ. lund. 26(3), 1–125, Plates 1–3.

DE TONI, G.B. (1903). Sylloge Algarum omnium hucusque Cognitarum. Vol. 4. Florideae. Sect. 3, pp. 775–1521 + 1523–1525. (Padua.)

FALKENBERG, P. (1901). Die Rhodomelaceen des Golfes von Neapel und der angrenzenden Meeres-abschnitte. Fauna und Flora des Golfes von Neapel. Monogr. 26. (Friedlander: Berlin.)

HARVEY, W.H. (1855a). Some account of the marine botany of the colony of Western Australia. Trans. R. Jr. Acad. 22, 525–566.

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

HUISMAN, J.M. & WALKER, D.I. (1990). A catalogue of the marine plants of Rottnest Island, Western Australia, with notes on their distribution and biogeography. Kingia 1, 349–459.

HUISMAN, J.M., KENDRICK, G.A., WALKER, D.I. & COUTÉ, A. (1990). The Marine Algae of Shark Bay, Western Australia. Research in Shark Bay. Report of the France-Australe Bicentenary Expedition Committee, pp. 89–100.

KÜTZING, F.T. (1864). Tabulae Phycologicae. Vol. 14. (Nordhausen.)

KENDRICK, G.A., HUISMAN, J.M. & WALKER, D.I. (1990). Benthic macroalgae of Shark Bay, Western Australia. Bot. Mar 33, 47–54.

KUNTZE, O. (1891). Revisio generum Plantarum. Part II. 4. Algae, pp. 877–930. (Leipzig.)

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

LUCAS, A.H.S. (1912). Supplementary list of the marine algae of Australia. Proc. Linn. Soc. N.S.W. 37, 157–171.

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.

MILLAR, A.J.K. (1990). Marine red algae of the Coffs Harbour region, northern New South Wales. Aust. Syst. Bot. 3, 293–593.

SILVA, P.C., BASSON, P.W. & MOE, R.L. (1996). Catalogue of the Benthic Marine Algae of the Indian Ocean. (University of California Press: Berkeley, Los Angeles & London.)

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

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

Author: M.J. Parsons and H.B.S. Womersley

Publication: Womersley, H.B.S. (24 December, 1998)
The Marine Benthic Flora of Southern Australia
Rhodophyta. Part IIIC. Ceramiales – Ceramiaceae, Dasyaceae
©State Herbarium of South Australia, Government of South Australia

Illustration in Womersley Part IIIA, 1998: FIG. 226.

Figure 226 image

Figure 226   enlarge

Fig. 226. Heterosiphonia crassipes (A, B, D, E, AD, A34148; C, AD, A32940). A. Habit. B. Transverse sections of young and old axes. C. Pseudolaterals with gradually tapering branches. D. Axis with coarse pseudolaterals. E. A coarse pseudolateral with basal polysiphonous segments and terminal mucronate cells.

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