sea grapes seaweed
seen? This juicy looking seaweed is made up of little balls
and is commonly seen on our Southern shores on rocks and coral rubble
in small clumps. In Singapore, it does not form extensive blooms.
Elsewhere, it is said to form meadows in front of mangroves.
Features: The seaweed resembles
bunches of little grapes. Each bunch about 2-8cm long, with bead-like
shapes (the 'grapes') arranged on a vertical 'stem'. The 'grape' (about
0.5cm diameter) spherical or club shaped with rounded tips. The shapes
may be densely or sparsely packed. These bunches of 'grapes' emerge
from a long horizontal 'stem' that creeps over hard surfaces or just
under the sand. It grows on coral rubble or on rocks, sometimes extending
onto the sand. Colours range from green to yellowish-green and bluish-green.
Some other Caulerpa species may take forms that resemble Oval sea
grapes. These include Caulerpa peltata, Caulerpa macrophysa.
There are varieties of Caulerpa racemosa with bell-shaped
tips (Caulerpa racemosa var turbinata) or flat like
little umbrellas (Caulerpa racemosa
Sometimes confused with Round
sea grape seaweeds (Caulerpa lentillifera). Here's more
on how to tell apart the sea grapes seaweeds.
Human uses: This seaweed is eaten
in some places. In the Philippines, it is eaten fresh as a
salad, or salted so it can be eaten later. Small quantities are also
exported to Japan. It is also eaten in Malaysia and Indonesia. It
is also reported to have antibacterial and antifungal properties,
and to be used to treat high blood pressure and rheumatism. The seaweed
is also fed to livestock and fish. However, some Caulerpa species
produce toxins to protect themselves from browsing fish. This also
makes them toxic to humans.
This seaweed is considered an alien invasive species in the Mediterranean.
Pulau Jong, Jul 07
Cyrene Reef, Jul 11
sea grapes on Singapore shores
photos of oval sea grapes seaweed on Singapore shores
*Species are difficult to positively identify without close examination
of internal parts. On this website, they are grouped by external features
for convenience of display.
racemosa on GlobinMed by the Institute for Medical
Research, Ministry of Health Malaysia: drawings and fact
Mariculture by Natalie Prins from the World of Algae page
on the the University of the Western Cape, South Africa website:
includes the culture and uses of Caulerpa racemosa.
- Pham, M.
N., H. T. W. Tan, S. Mitrovic & H. H. T. Yeo, 2011. A
Checklist of the Algae of Singapore, 2nd Edition. Raffles
Museum of Biodiversity Research, National University of
Singapore, Singapore. 99 pp. Uploaded 1 October 2011. [PDF,
- Lim, S.,
P. Ng, L. Tan, & W. Y. Chin, 1994. Rhythm of the Sea:
The Life and Times of Labrador Beach. Division of Biology,
School of Science, Nanyang Technological University & Department
of Zoology, the National University of Singapore. 160 pp.
- Chou, L.
M., 1998. A
Guide to the Coral Reef Life of Singapore. Singapore
Science Centre. 128 pages.
John M. 2000. Marine
Plants of Australia
University of Western Australia Press. 300pp.
H. P. & Menez, E. G., 1997.Field
Guide to the Common Mangroves, Seagrasses and Algae of the Philippines.
Bookmark, Inc., the Philippines. 197 pp.
Gavino. C. Jr., 1997. Field
Guide and Atlas of the Seaweed Resources of the Philippines..
Bookmark, Inc., the Philippines. 306 pp.