Chondracanthus acicularis (Roth) Fredericq

Chondracanthus acicularis

Also known as Gigartina acicularis
Description: Cartilaginous, cylindrical, purple-red or blackish fronds, to 100 mm long, irregularly bipinnately branched, branches curved, sharply pointed. Base discoid, often stoloniferous.
Habitat: On rocks, lower intertidal, generally uncommon but may be locally common on sheltered, silty shores in the lower intertidal, southern and western shores reaching its northern limit on the mid-western Irish coast.
Similar species: Gigartina pistillata (S.G. Gmelin) Stackhouse, a very uncommon species except in the lower intertidal of south-western English shores north to Penbrokeshire and Co. Waterford, Ireland, forms pinnately branched ultimate branches and is not stoloniferous. Chondracanthus teedei (Roth) Kützing (formerly Gigartina teedei) is brownish red in colour, distinctly compressed, regularly pinnately branched, and occurs in a few localities on the south and west coasts of Britain and Ireland.

Species list

Photographs © M.D. Guiry