Electronic Flora of South Australia
Electronic Flora of South Australia
Census of SA Plants, Algae & Fungi
Identification tools

Electronic Flora of South Australia Species Fact Sheet

Perrinia ericoides (Harvey in Hooker & Harvey)Womersley, comb. nov.

Phylum Rhodophyta – Family Rhodomelaceae – Tribe Polysiphonieae


Polysiphonia ericoides Harvey in Hooker & Harvey 1847: 400. Harvey 1847: 50; 1859b: 301; 1862a: pl. 185A; 1863, synop.: xxi. J. Agardh 1863: 956. Kützing 1849: 809. Sonder 1880: 35.

Bryocladia ericoides (Harvey in Hooker & Harvey)Schmitz in Falkenberg 1901: 169. Adams 1994: 316, pl. 108 upper left. De Toni 1903: 967. Guiler 1952: 102. Lucas 1909: 42; 1929a: 22. May 1965: 382.

Thallus (Fig. 97A) dark brown-red, drying brown-black, erect, 2–10 cm high, with several tufted axes from prostrate basal stolons, axes radially branched for 3–4 orders, narrow-pyramidal in outline, becoming denuded below apart from bases of laterals; all branches ecorticate. Attachment by rhizoids from pericentral cells of stolons; epilithic, epizoic (on mussels) or epiphytic (on coralline algae). Structure. Apical cells dome-shaped, cutting off 11–13 (–15) pericentral cells (Fig. 97B) close to apices, with determinate laterals arising more-or-less spirally, first simple, later with 1–3 branches, 1–3 mm long and 120–220 µm in diameter, segments L/D 0.3–0.5. Trichoblasts prominent, 250–1000 µm long, borne on each segment or a few segments apart, lower cells 40–50 µm in diameter and L/D (3–) 5–10, tapering above to 15–20 µm and cells L/D 6–10. Axes 500–900 µm in diameter, segments L/D 0.3–0.6. Rhizoids 40–80 µm in diameter with digitate haptera, cut off from pericentral cells. Rhodoplasts discoid.

Reproduction: Gametophytes dioecious. Carposporophytes with a small fusion cell and branched gonimoblast with elongate-clavate terminal carposporangia 25–40 µm in diameter. Cystocarps (Fig. 97C) ovoid to urceolate, 250–500 µm in diameter, shortly stalked; pericarp ostiolate, 2 cells thick, outer cells angular, isodiametric. Spermatangial branches borne as a basal branch of trichoblasts, with a sterile basal cell but no sterile apical cells, 150–300 µm long and 35–55 µm in diameter.

Tetrasporangia (Fig. 96D) borne in simple or branched determinate laterals 1–3 mm long with smooth margins and 90–200 µm in diameter, in opposite decussate pairs (Fig. 97E), 50–70 µm in diameter.

Type from Tasmania (Ewing); lectotype in Herb. Harvey, TCD.

Selected specimens: Bridgewater Bay, Vic., lower eulittoral (Beauglehole, 5.vi.1949; AD, A12079). Three Hummocks I., NW Tas., low eulittoral (Bennett, 17.i.1954; AD, A19700). Bicheno, Tas., lower eulittoral (Womersley, 4.xi.1982; AD, A56458). Tessellated Pavements, Eaglehawk Neck, Tas., lower eulittoral ( Womersley, 30.x.1982; AD, A54520). Fortescue Bay, Tasman Pen., Tas., uppermost sublittoral (Womersley, 22.x.1994; AD, A64207). Port Arthur, Tas. (Harvey, AD, A18283 ex TCD).

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

Distribution: Bridgewater Bay, Vic., and Three Hummocks I. and E Tasmania. New Zealand.

Taxonomic notes: P. ericoides is conspicuous in the eulittoral on SE Tasmanian coasts, under moderate wave action, and is known also from Bridgewater Bay in Victoria.


ADAMS, N.M. (1994). Seaweeds of New Zealand. (Cant. Univ. Press: Christchurch.)

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

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.)

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

HARVEY, W.H. (1847). Nereis Australis, pp. 1–69, Plates 1–25. (Reeve: London.)

HARVEY, W.H. (1859b). Algae. In Hooker, J.D., The Botany of the Antarctic Voyage. III. Flora Tasmaniae. Vol. II, pp. 282–343, Plates 185–196. (Reeve: London.)

HARVEY, W.H. (1862a). Phycologia Australica. Vol. 4, Plates 181–240. (Reeve: London.)

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

HOOKER, J.D. & HARVEY, W.H. (1847). Algae Tasmanicae. Lond. J. Bot. 6, 397–417.

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

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

LUCAS, A.H.S. (1929a). The marine algae of Tasmania. Pap. Proc. R. Soc. Tasm. 1928, 6–27.

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.

SONDER, O.W. (1880). 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 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.

Illustration in Womersley Part IIIA, 2003: FIG. 97.

Figure 97 image

Figure 97   enlarge

Fig. 97. Perrinia ericoides (AD, A54520). A. Habit. B. Transverse sections of indeterminate axis and determinate lateral. C. Cystocarps. D. Tetrasporangia in branches of determinate lateral. E. Tetrasporangia in decussate pairs.

Disclaimer Copyright Disclaimer Copyright Email Contact:
State Herbarium of South Australia
Government of South Australia Government of South Australia Government of South Australia Department for Environment and Water