feathery green seaweed
This beautiful feathery green seaweed is commonly seen on many of
our shores, growing on coral rubble and sometimes spreading out on
sandy bottoms. Usually found in clumps, which can cover an area of
about 40-50cm. But it does not blanket the shore like other seasonally
Features: Frond feather-like 3-15cm
long. The mid-rib or central 'stem' of the feathery structure is flat
and usually with a width much narrower than the length of the side
'branches'. Side 'branches' are somewhat flat with a pointed tip.
There is a slight constriction where the side 'branch' attaches to
the mid-rib. The side 'branches' rarely overlap one another. These
feathery structures emerge along the length of a horizontal 'stem'
that creeps over hard surfaces or just under the sand. Colours bright
to dark green.
Sometimes confused with other
feathery green seaweeds or with seagrasses.
Here's more on how to tell apart different
feathery green seaweeds and how to tell apart feathery
green seaweeds and seagrasses.
Human uses: This green
seaweed is reported to be edible, to have antibacterial and antifungal
properties, and used to treat tuberculosis and high blood pressure.
However, some Caulerpa species produce toxins to protect themselves
from browsing fish. This also makes them toxic to humans.
Status and threats: This seaweed
is native to the tropical waters of the Caribbean and Indo-Pacific.
A particular strain of this seaweed developed for the aquarium trade
was accidentally introduced to the coasts of the Mediterranean Sea,
Australia and California. This strain is resistant to cooler temperate
waters and is toxic to native herbivores such as fish, sea urchins
and snails. So it grows unchecked and thick carpets of the seaweed
smother native plants and deprive native animals of food. Efforts
to eradicate it has not succeeded and this seaweed is now considered
a noxious introduced alien.
Sisters Island, Jul 04
sickle-shaped, slight constriction where
it attaches to the mid-rib.
Labrador, Nov 04
Tuas, Sep 11
Sentosa, Jul 05
St. John's Island, Sep 04
Pulau Semakau, Aug 11
feathery green seaweed on Singapore shores
photos of taxifolia feathery green seaweeds on Singapore shores
are difficult to positively identify without close examination of internal
On this website, they are grouped by external features for convenience
- 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, 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.
H. P. & Menez, E. G., 1997.Field
Guide to the Common Mangroves, Seagrasses and Algae of the Philippines.
Bookmark, Inc., the Philippines. 197 pp.
- Trono, Gavino.
C. Jr., 1997. Field
Guide and Atlas of the Seaweed Resources of the Philippines..
Bookmark, Inc., the Philippines. 306 pp.