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Algae > Volume 29(2); 2014 > Article
Algae 2014;29(2): 101-109. doi: https://doi.org/10.4490/algae.2014.29.2.101
A new species of Bangiopsis: B. franklynottii sp. nov. (Stylonematophyceae, Rhodophyta) from Australia and India and comments on the genus
John A. West1,*, Susan Loiseaux de Goër2 and Giuseppe C. Zuccarello3

1School of Botany, University of Melbourne, Parkville, VIC 3010, Australia
211 Rue des Moguerou, 29680 Roscoff, France
3School of Biological Sciences, Victoria University of Wellington, PO Box 600, Wellington 6140, New Zealand
*Corresponding Author  Email: jwest@unimelb.edu.au
Small red algae, especially those previously referred to as ‘primitive’ are often overlooked, but can be quite abundant. These ‘primitive’ red algae are now placed in several classes distinct from the Florideophyceae, for example the Stylonematophyceae. A brownish-red filamentous alga was collected from a sandy tide pool at Cape Tribulation, Queensland, Australia. Cultured specimens were identified as Bangiopsis and conformed to the morphological characters of the genus (multicellular base, erect filaments branched or unbranched, uniseriate to multiseriate-tubular, single multilobed purple-red to red-brown plastid with central pyrenoid, vegetative cells released directly as spores). Molecular data of two plastid genes (rbcL, psbA) support placement of the Australian isolate and isolates from India in Bangiopsis. The genetic variation between these isolates and isolates from Puerto Rico previously attributed to B. subsimplex indicates that these should be considered as a separate species. As the type locality is in the Atlantic Ocean, French Guiana, and not far from Puerto Rico, and the Puerto Rican isolate has been used often in phylogenetic analyses, we propose that the Indian and Pacific Ocean isolates be designated a new species, B. franklynottii, to acknowledge Ott’s many years of research on inconspicuous freshwater and marine red algae. Our research also highlights the lack of careful descriptions in many of the records of this genus and the lack of morphological characters to distinguish species. Especially within the morphologically simple red algae, morphological distinctness does not necessarily reflect evolutionary divergences.
Key words: Australia; Bangiopsis franklynotti sp. nov.; flora; India; psbA; rbcL; Rhodophyta; Stylonematales; Stylonematophyceae

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