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Identifying algae is not always easy! Learn more about the algae monitored by the LiMPETS program. The list below includes:
- 16 core taxa that are monitored at as many sites as possible
- 3 other taxa (denoted with *) that are monitored at only one or two sites
Go to Datasheets and Forms to find out which species are monitored at your LiMPETS site of interest.
- Dead man’s fingers – Codium fragile
- Encrusting coralline algae – many species
- Feather boa kelp – Egregia menziesii
- Flattened rockweeds – Fucus gardneri/Hesperophycus californicus
- Green pin-cushion alga – Cladophora columbiana
- Iridescent algae – Mazzaella flaccida/splendens
- Lawn alga – Chondracanthus canaliculatus
- Nori – Porphyra spp.
- Scouring-pad alga – Endocladia muricata
- Sea lettuces – Ulva spp.
- Sea sacs – Halosaccion glandiforme
- Slender rockweeds – Pelvetiopsis limitata/Silvetia compressa
- Stunted turkish towel – Mastocarpus spp./Mazzaella affinis
- Surfgrasses – Phyllospadix scouleri/torreyi
- Tar spot algae – Mastocarpus spp./Ralfsia spp. and others
- Upright coralline algae – Bossiella spp./Calliarthron spp./Corallina spp.
- * Christmas card algae – Microcladia spp./Plocamium spp.
- * Frilly red algae – Cryptopleura spp.
- * Vermicelli alga – Gracilariopsis lemaneiformis
- We also monitor:
- Bare rock
- Loose sand
- Tar (petroleum)
Upright Coralline Algae (Bossiella spp./
Calliarthron spp./Corallina spp.)
- Many species, often difficult to distinguish from one another. All of the species have calcium carbonate deposits in their cell walls, making them relatively stiff; many species are branched and have tiny jointed segments. Sometimes they persist without upright segments, in which case they are counted as Encrusting Coralline Algae. They are found in a variety of colors including grey, dull pink and bright pink.
- Aleutian Islands to Chile.
- Common in the mid to low intertidal and shallow subtidal; on rock faces and in tidepools.
- Sunlight and dissolved nutrients, which are required for photosynthesis.
- Fun Fact:
- Although the calcium carbonate in the tissues make it difficult for many animals to feed on these algae, there are a few molluscs, like lined chitons and dunce-cap limpets, that readily feed on them.
- Reason for Monitoring:
- Resistant to grazing, trampling, and pollution, especially Corallina spp., which sometimes are the main algae remaining around sewage discharges.
- Encyclopedia of the Sanctuary
- Mondragon, J and J. Mondragon. 2003. Seaweeds of the Pacific Coast: Common Marine Algae from Alaska to Baja California. Sea Challengers, Monterey,California.