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Electronic Flora of South Australia Genus Fact Sheet

Genus LOPHURELLA Schmitz in Schmitz & Falkenberg 1897: 440.

Phylum Rhodophyta – Family Rhodomelaceae – Tribe Polysiphonieae

Thallus erect, tufted, with numerous axes arising from entangled prostrate branches, upper axes covered with radial, simple or branched, more-or-less determinate, short laterals. All branches corticated. Structure. Apical cells dome-shaped, subapical cells cutting off 4 pericentral cells which become corticated close to apices and heavily corticated below. Trichoblasts mainly on determinate laterals, branched, soon caducous.

Reproduction: Gametophytes dioecious. Carposporophytes with a basal fusion cell and branched gonimoblast with clavate terminal carposporangia. Cystocarps sessile or short-stalked, ovoid; pericarp ostiolate, corticated. Spermatangial branches replacing whole trichoblasts, with sterile basal and apical cells.

Tetrasporangia in determinate laterals, single per segment, spirally arranged.

Type species: L. periclados (Sonder) Schmitz in Schmitz & Falkenberg 1897: 441.

Taxonomic notes: A genus of about 4–6 species (Ricker 1987, p. 294), including L. hookeriana (J. Agardh) Falkenberg (1901, p. 158) from subantarctic S. America and New Zealand, L. comosa (Hooker & Harvey) Falkenberg (1901, p. 158) from the Falkland Is, and L. caespitosa (Hooker & Harvey) Falkenberg (1901, p. 155) from New Zealand.

The type species, L. periclados, has main axes bearing short, radial, determinate laterals, but the other species have less well defined laterals. The genus differs from Polysiphonia in this feature and in having all branches heavily corticated to close to the tips. From other Australian genera of the Polysiphonieae, it differs in having corticate determinate laterals (ecorticate in Echinothamnion, Diplocladia, and Perrinia) or in having terete laterals (compressed in Chiracanthia and Pithyopsis).


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.)

RICKER, R.W. (1987). Taxonomy and biogeography of Macquarie Island Seaweeds. (British Museum (N.H.): London.)

SCHMITZ, F. & FALKENBERG, P. (1897). Rhodomelaceae. In Engler, A. & Prantl, K., Die natürlichen Pflanzenfamilien. T.1. Abt. 2, pp. 421–480. (Englemann: Leipzig.)

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

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.

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