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Electronic Flora of South Australia Species Fact Sheet

Endosiphonia spinulosa (Harvey) Womersley & Parsons, comb. nov.

Phylum Rhodophyta – Family Rhodomelaceae – Tribe Lophothalieae


Alsidium ?spinulosum Harvey 1855a: 538.

Rhodomela ?spinulosa (Harvey) Harvey 1860: pl. 130.

Rytiphlaea spinulosa (Harvey) Silva in Silva et al. 1996: 551.

Rytiphlaea aculeata C. Agardh ex J. Agardh 1841: 26 (nomen nudum); 1863: 1087. De Toni 1903: 1096. Harvey 1863, synop.: xviii. Lucas 1909: 46. May 1965: 397. Sonder 1880: 33.

?Endosphonia spinuligera Zanardini 1878: 35. Dawson 1956: 58, fig. 61. De Toni 1903: 1002. Falkenberg 1901: 571, pl. 13 fig. 12. Huisman 1997: 204; 2000: 166. May 1965: 377 Millar 1999: 521. Millar & Kraft 1993: 53. Silva et al. 1996: 494. Weber van-Bos4 1923: 354.

Thallus (Fig. 107A) dark red-brown, 10–30 cm high, cartilaginous, much branched irregularly radially with 1 to several terete axes bearing 3–5 orders of lesser branches progressively shorter, giving a spiny appearance; axes 0.5–2 (–3) mm in diameter, grading to short spinous ultimate branches 1–3 mm long and (100–) 200–300 µm in diameter; trichoblasts rhodoplastic, not conspicuous on dried specimens; upper branches usually covered with non-geniculate coralline algae. Holdfast of coarse branching fibres, 1–3 cm across; epilithic. Structure. Apical cell elongate, 8–10 µm in diameter; growth monopodial, trichoblasts developed close to apices, followed by 4 pericentral cells (Fig. 107C), conspicuous in transverse section and with the basal trichoblast cell enlarged and interposed in the ring of pericentral cells. Trichoblasts 0.5–1.5 mm long, caducous, with 4–9 branches 1–2 cells apart, spirally arranged (Fig. 107B), lower cells where branched 8–12 µm in diameter and L/D 1–2, unbranched ends with 2–4 small basal cells then increasing suddenly to 12–22 µm in diameter and L/D 5–10 (–20). Cortication commencing close to apices, becoming extensive, with the pericentral cells remaining clear in section (Fig. 107C), surrounded by smaller cortical cells; epidermal cells mostly 10–15 µm in diameter and L/D 2–3, often rosette like over larger inner cells. Lateral branches developed from trichoblasts. Cells multinucleate; rhodoplasts discoid, becoming chained in larger cells.

Reproduction: Gametophytes dioecious. Procarps developed on basal segments (becoming polysiphonous) of trichoblasts or at the base of their branches. Carposporophytes with a basal fusion cell and compact, branched, gonimoblast with clavate terminal carposporangia 16–35 µm in diameter. Cystocarps (Fig. 107D) sessile, ovoid to slightly urceolate, 0.7–1 mm in diameter, with a short neck; pericarp ostiolate, with about 12 erect filaments, each cell cutting off 2 isodiametric outer cells with 1–2 layers of cortical cells. Spermatangia (Fig. 107E) cover the basal part of trichoblasts, with protruding monosiphonous filaments, fertile parts 300–800 µm long and 50–90 µm in diameter, borne on monosiphonous pedicels.

Tetrasporangia (Fig. 107F) in branched polysiphonous branches developed from trichoblasts, on monosiphonous pedicels and with apices producing unbranched monosiphonous filaments (Fig. 107G) on each segment, fertile parts 0.5–1 mm long and 100–140 µm in diameter; tetrasporangia spirally arranged, bulging the segments, 60–110 µm in diameter, with 2–3 cover cells.

Lectotype from "Garden I., Rottnest I. or Cape Riche, W. Aust." (Harvey, Trav. Set 180): to be chosen.

Selected specimens: Point Clune, Rottnest I., W. Aust., drift (Kraft 7202, Ricker & Gabrielson, 5.xii.1980; MELU), 11–13 m deep (Ricker & Kraft,2.xii.1980; MELU and AD, A51957), and 13–14 m deep (Walker, 6.xii.1984; AD, A56641). Elliston, S. Aust., drift (Womersley, 13.i.1951; AD, A13477). Waterloo Bay (Elliston), S. Aust, 8 m deep near bar (Turner, 28.iv.1983; AD, A54156). Thistle I., S. Aust., 16 m deep (Shepherd & Baldock, 2.i.1964; AD, A27349). Avoid Bay, S. Aust., drift (Womersley, 30.xi.1975; AD, A46846). South West Rock, S of Kangaroo I., S. Aust., 15–36 m deep (Branden, 18.vi.1991; AD, A61438).

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

Distribution: N and W Australia, south to Thistle I., S. Aust., and from Lord Howe and Norfolk Islands.

New Guinea, Borneo, Philippines and the Marshall Is.


AGARDH, J.G. (1841). In historiam algarum symbolae. Linnaea 15, 1–50, 443–457.

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. (Friedländer: 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. (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.)

HUISMAN, J.M. (1997). Marine Benthic Algae of the Houtman Abrolhos Islands, Western Australia. In Wells, F.E. (Ed.) The Marine Flora and Fauna of the Houtman Abrolhos Islands, Western Australia, pp. 177–237. (W. Aust. Museum: Perth.)

HUISMAN, J.M. (2000). Marine Plants of Australia. (Univ. W. Aust. Press, Nedlands, W. Aust. & ABRS, Canberra, A.C.T.)

LUCAS, A.H.S. (1909). Revised list of the Fucoideae and Florideae of Australia. Proc. Linn. Soc. N.S.W. 34, 9–60.

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

MILLAR, A.J.K. & KRAFT, G.T. (1993). Catalogue of marine and freshwater Red Algae (Rhodophyta) of New South Wales, including Lord Howe Island, South-western Pacific. Aust. Syst. Bot. 6, 1–90.

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

SONDER, O.W. (1880). In Mueller, F., Fragmenta Phytographiae Australiae. Supplementum ad volumen undecinum: Algae Australianae hactenus cognitae, pp. 1–42, 105–107. (Melbourne.)

ZANARDINI, J. (1878). Phyceae Papuanae novae vel minus cognitae a cl. O. Beccari in itinere ad Novam Guineam annis 1872–75 collectae. Nuovo giornale Bot. Italiano 10, 34–40.

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

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

Publication: Womersley, H.B.S. (24 February, 2003)
The Marine Benthic Flora of Southern Australia
Rhodophyta. Part IIID. Ceramiales – Delesseriaceae, Sarcomeniaceae, Rhodomelaceae
Reproduced with permission from The Marine Benthic Flora of Southern Australia Part IIID 2003, by H.B.S. Womersley. Australian Biological Resources Study, Canberra. Copyright Commonwealth of Australia.

Illustration in Womersley Part IIIA, 2003: FIG. 107.

Figure 107 image

Figure 107   enlarge

Fig. 107. Endosiphonia spinulosa (AD, A61438). A. Habit. B. Branch with spirally branched trichoblasts with small cells near their base. C. Transverse section of axis, cortex more developed on one side. D. Branch with cystocarps. E. Branched trichoblasts with spermatangial organs. F. Stichidia bearing trichoblasts. G. A stichidium with tetrasporangia and trichoblast branches from each segment.

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