Sonderopelta Womersley & Sinkora, 1981

Holotype species: Sonderopelta coriacea Womersley & Sinkora

Currently accepted name for the type species: Sonderophycus coriaceus (Womersley & Sinkora) M.J.Wynne

Original publication and holotype designation: Womersley, H.B.S. & Sinkora, D. (1981). Sonderophycus and the type specimen of Peyssonnelia australis (Cryptonemiales, Rhodophyta). Transactions of the Royal Society of South Australia 105: 85-87, 1 fig.

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Description: Plants are coarse and cartilaginous, forming large (to 20 cm breadth) horizontal fan-shaped expanses anchored excentrically by stout rhizoidal masses. The upper surface is marked by concentric grooves and striations, whereas the lower surface has a totally different appearance and texture, being covered by a tomentum of rhizoids. Plants are completely uncalcified, and are composed of a mesothallial region of narrow, parallel-running filaments giving rise to a deep dorsal cortex of arching perithallial filaments and a much narrower ventral perithallus with surface cells terminating in rhizoids. Tetrasporangia are cruciate and form by direct conversion of epidermal cells within extensive dorsal nemathecia totally lacking paraphyses (pers. obs.). Cystocarps consist of linear, fasciculate chains of carposporangia borne outwardly from points along horizontally aligned connecting filaments often at some remove from points of fusion to auxiliary cells (pers. obs.). Details of carpogonial branches and early gonimoblast development are unknown, but it seems likely that the genus does not belong in the Peyssonneliaceae. Reproductive material has only recently become available and is being studied in detail.

Information kindly contributed by G.T. Kraft but may now be outdated.

Taxonomic status: This name is currently regarded as a synonym of Sonderophycus.

Most recent taxonomic treatment adopted: Wynne, M.J. (2011). A checklist of benthic marine algae of the tropical and subtropical western Atlantic: third revision. Nova Hedwigia Beihefte 140: [1] 7-166.

Comments: Distribution: Endemic to the southern coast of Australia, where it occurs from 2-25 m depths in high-energy habitats, and also the Three Kings Islands of New Zealand (Adams and Nelson 1985).

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Some of the descriptions included in AlgaeBase were originally from the unpublished Encyclopedia of Algal Genera, organised in the 1990s by Dr Bruce Parker on behalf of the Phycological Society of America (PSA) and intended to be published in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. 04 December 2015. AlgaeBase. World-wide electronic publication, National University of Ireland, Galway.; searched on 01 December 2022

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