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Genus MAZOYERELLA Gordon-Mills & Womersley 1974: 134

Phylum Rhodophyta – Order Ceramiales – Family Ceramiaceae – Tribe Monosporeae

Thallus erect, subdichotomous, slender, attached from prostrate or erect axes by rhizoids; cells multinucleate.

Reproduction: Propagules ovoid, unicellular with a single, elongate stalk cell.

Gametophytes dioecious. Procarps on subterminal cells of short axes, with 2 periaxial cells, one bearing a 4-celled carpogonial branch and also a sterile terminal cell; post-fertilization slight fusion of the carpogonial branch cells occurs, a single auxiliary cell is cut off from the supporting cell, and 2 or 3 successive gonimolobes develop. The sterile cells of the procarp form inner involucral filaments, and the hypogenous cell of the fertile axis develops a vegetative branch. Spermatangial heads occur on upper thallus cells.

Polysporangia are sessile on upper thallus cells, subspherical, with 8 or 16 spores.

Type species: Maz. arachnoidea (Harvey) Gordon-Mills & Womersley 1974: 136.

Taxonomic notes: A genus of 4 species, the type, Maz. australis, Maz. krishnamurthii (Subramanian) Huisman & Gordon-Mills (1994, p. 85) and Maz. kraftii Bucher & J. Norris (1995, p.133, figs 12–18).

Monosporus australis is here transferred to Mazoyerella as the second southern Australian species, following observations by Huisman of the procarp structure and spermatangial heads in culture (Huisman & Gordon-Mills 1994, p. 87). Unfortunately no post-fertilization stages were seen, but the known sexual and polysporangial reproduction is identical with that of comparable stages in Maz. arachnoidea apart from absence of involucral filaments from the sterile procarp cells; this development may well be dependent on fertilization.

The genus Monosporus is now restricted to the type species M. pedicellatus, for which sexual reproduction is unknown and only tetrasporangia are reported, and possibly M. indicus Børgesen (1931) – see also Ballantine (1996, p. 12. figs 1–3) and Bucher & Norris (1995, p. 15), and M. inkyui Kim & Choi (1996), although the latter has the propagule morphology of Tanakaella. Monosporus is discussed by Huisman & Kraft (1982, p. 189).


BØRGESEN, F. (1931). Some Indian Rhodophyceae especially from the shores of the Presidency of Bombay. Bull. Misc. Inf., Roy. Bot. Gard., Kew, No. 1, 1–24, Plates I, II.

BALLANTINE, D.L. (1996). New records of benthic marine algae from Florida. Gulf of Mexico Science, 1996(1), 11–15.

BUCHER, K.E. & NORRIS, J.N. (1995). Marine algae new to the Lesser Antilles, including Mazoyerella kraftii sp. nov. (Ceramiales, Rhodophyta). Caribbean J. Sci. 31, 1–24.

GORDON-MILLS, E.M. & WOMERSLEY, H.B.S. (1974). The morphology and life history of Mazoyerella gen. nov. (M. arachnoidea (Harvey) comb. nov. ), Rhodophyta, Ceramiaceae, from southern Australia. Br. phycol. J. 9, 127–137.

HUISMAN, J.M. & GORDON-MILLS, E.M. (1994). A proposal to resurrect the tribe Monosporeae Schmitz et Hauptfleisch, with a description of Tanakaella itonoi sp. nov. (Ceramiaceae, Rhodophyta) from southern and western Australia. Phycologia 33, 81–90.

HUISMAN, J.M. & KRAFT, G.T. (1982). Deucalion gen. nov. and Anisoschizus gen. nov. (Ceramiaceae, Ceramiales), two new propagule-forming red algae from southern Australia. .1. Phycol.18, 177–192.

KIM, G.H. & CHOI, D.S. (1996). Monosporus inkyui sp. nov. from Korea (Ceramiales, Rhodophyta). Algae 11, 95–100.

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

Author: J.M. Huisman & 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


1. Thallus much branched, upper filaments very slender, 4–16 µm in diameter

Maz. arachnoidea

1. Thallus subdichotomously branched, filaments robust, (20–) 40–150 µm in diameter in upper and mid cells

Maz. australis

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