updated Oct 2016
This toothy green seaweed is commonly seen on some of our shores,
usually in a small clump on coral rubble.
Features: Zipper-like structure
4-6cm long. The mid-rib or central 'stem' may be cylindrical or flat,
narrow or relatively broad. The side 'branches' usually very short,
flat and have pointed tips. Thus it looks somewhat like a zipper!
May be long and slender, or short and very broad. The central stem
may branch at the tips to form Y-shapes.
These structures emerge along the length of a 'stem' that creeps over
hard surfaces or just under the sand. Dark to olive green, sometimes
Sometimes confused with similar
green seaweeds. Here's more on how to tell
apart some green seaweeds.
Human uses: Zipper seaweed is
reported to be edible, to have antibacterial and antifungal properties,
and used to treat high blood pressure. However, some Caulerpa
species produce toxins to protect themselves from browsing fish. This
also makes them toxic to humans.
Its scientific name 'cupressoides' means 'cypress-like' or 'resembling
Pulau Sekudu, Jun 05
Chek Jawa, Aug 05
Pulau Sekudu, Sep 07
Sentosa, Jun 04
*Species are difficult to positively identify without close examination
of internal parts.
On this website, they are grouped by external features for convenience of
green seaweeds on Singapore shores
- Pham, M.
N., H. T. W. Tan, S. Mitrovic & H. H. T. Yeo, 2011. A
Checklist of the Algae of Singapore, 2nd Edition. Lee Kong Chian Natural History Museum, National University of Singapore,
Singapore. 99 pp. Uploaded 1 October 2011. [PDF, 1.58 MB].
- Eric Coppejans
and Tom Beeckman. 1990. Caulerpa
(Chlorophyta, Caulerpales) from the Kenyan coast (pdf).
Laboratorium voor Morfologie, Systematiek en Ecologie van de Planten
R.U.G. Ledeganckstraat 35, 9000 Gent, Belgium on the Phycology
Research website: identification key and useful diagrams on
how to tell apart similar Caulerpa species.
John M. 2000. Marine
Plants of Australia University of Western Australia Press. 300pp.
- Trono, Gavino.
C. Jr., 1997. Field
Guide and Atlas of the Seaweed Resources of the Philippines..
Bookmark, Inc., the Philippines. 306 pp.