Ptilophora Kützing, 1847

Holotype species: Ptilophora spissa (Suhr) Kützing

Original publication and holotype designation: Kützing, F.T. (1847). Diagnosen und Bemerkungen zu neuen oder kritischen Algen. Botanische Zeitung 5: 1-5, 22-25, 33-38, 52-55, 164-167, 177-180, 193-198, 219-223.

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Description: Thallus erect, 10–50 cm tall, richly branched from compressed to flat cartilaginous blades. Main axes irregularly or regularly pinnately branched from the margins or surface, with or without a prominent midrib and, in some species, with wings; most species with small laminal or marginal determinate proliferations below the apical parts. Plants occasionally associated with sponges (not in N.W.A.) that cover the blades except near actively growing apices; holdfast fibrous, often hapteroid. Structure uniaxial, with an indistinct apical cell giving rise to an outer cortex of small cells with many plastids, a mid-cortex of anticlinal filaments of elongate cells separating dense groups of rhizines, and an inner cortex of relatively large rounded cells; medulla of longitudinal filaments of cells often with a few rhizines. Life history triphasic, with isomorphic tetrasporophytes and gametophytes, the latter usually dioecious. Cystocarps in marginal or laminal proliferations, swollen, bilocular, with an ostiole on each side and a central placenta, with terminal carposporangia. Spermatangia formed in superficial patches on proliferations. Tetrasporangia in sori on proliferations, lying in the cortex, decussately divided [after Womersley & Guiry (1994: 124–125)].

Information contributed by: Huisman, Boo & Boo (2018).. The most recent alteration to this page was made on 2018-09-26 by M.D. Guiry.

Taxonomic status: This name is of an entity that is currently accepted taxonomically.

Gender: This genus name is currently treated as feminine.

Most recent taxonomic treatment adopted: Huisman, J.M., Boo, G.H. & Boo, S.M. (2018). Gelidiales. In: Algae of Australia. Marine benthic algae of north-western Australia. 2. Red algae. (Huisman, J.M. Eds), pp. 245-264. Canberra & Melbourne: ABRS & CSIRO Publishing.

Comments: A genus known from temperate and warm water and with representative species in South Africa, Southern and Western Australia, Philippines, Japan and the Mediterranean. Often found in subtidal habitats. According to Tronchin et al (2003: 88), the generitype P. spissa is only known from the type specimen and preliminary observations in a study of South African Ptilophora species indicate that the P. spissa specimen may be an aberrant morphology of another species from the same locality.

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Some of the descriptions included in AlgaeBase were originally from the unpublished Encyclopedia of Algal Genera, organised in the 1990s by Dr Bruce Parker on behalf of the Phycological Society of America (PSA) and intended to be published in CD format. These AlgaeBase descriptions are now being continually updated, and each current contributor is identified above. The PSA and AlgaeBase warmly acknowledge the generosity of all past and present contributors and particularly the work of Dr Parker.

Descriptions of chrysophyte genera were subsequently published in J. Kristiansen & H.R. Preisig (eds.). 2001. Encyclopedia of Chrysophyte Genera. Bibliotheca Phycologica 110: 1-260.

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M.D. Guiry in Guiry, M.D. & Guiry, G.M. 26 September 2018. AlgaeBase. World-wide electronic publication, National University of Ireland, Galway.; searched on 08 June 2023

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