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Acanthophora spicifera   (M. Vahl) Børgesen, 1910

Erect sea moss

Native range | All suitable habitat | Point map | Year 2100
This map was computer-generated and has not yet been reviewed.
Acanthophora spicifera  AquaMaps  Data sources: GBIF OBIS
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Classification / Names Common names | Synonyms | CoL | ITIS | WoRMS

Florideophyceae | Ceramiales | Rhodomelaceae

Environment: milieu / climate zone / depth range / distribution range Ecology

Sessile; depth range 0 - 19 m (Ref. 83908).  Tropical

Distribution Countries | FAO areas | Ecosystems | Occurrences | Introductions

Atlantic Ocean: from USA to southeast Brazil, including Gulf of Mexico, Bermuda and the Caribbean, east to Mauritania and south to Angola, including Equatorial Guinea and São Tomé and Príncipe; Indian Ocean: from the Arabian Sea, including the Persian Gulf, Gulf of Oman, and the Red Sea, south to South Africa, including Aldabra Islands, Seychelles and Réunion, east to Sri Lanka, including Laccadive Islands and Maldives; in the Bay of Bengal, south to Dampier Archipelago, Western Australia, including Andaman and Nicobar Islands; Pacific Ocean: from China to the South China Sea, south to Lord Howe Island, including Spermonde Archipelago and Federated States of Micronesia, Solomon Islands and New Caledonia, east to the Hawaiian Islands, including Fiji, French Polynesia and the Samoan Archipelago.

Length at first maturity / Size / Weight / Age

Maturity: Lm ?  range ? - ? cm

Short description Morphology

Thalli erect, loosely branched, greenish brown to purple, with a small discoid holdfast. Branches terete throughout, slightly attenuated towards the acute tips. Spinous projections, a characteristic of this genus, are densely borne on the spirally arranged determinate branchlets. Thalli to about 15 cm in height (Ref. 80758).

Biology     Glossary (e.g. epibenthic)

Used for human food consumption; also a source of lambda-carrageenan and antibiotics (Ref. 80758); of low commercial interest internationally as carrageenan sources (Ref. 82232). Maximum depth from Ref. 102170. Usually inhabits sandy-rocky areas at the lower intertidal zone where the plants are sometimes exposed to air during very low tides; found up to the upper subtidal zone and in tidepools (Ref. 80758). In Fiji, found in the high subtidal or lower intertidal zones of relatively sheltered rockflats or mudflats and sandbanks, restricted to areas where persistent low water salinity was likely to be rare; in Laucala Island, Suva Harbour, Fiji, A. spicifera were attached to rocks in the intertidal zone (Ref. 82232). Connor (1983) reported that plant size and condition of Panamanian Acanthophora decreased during the hot windless season (November-January) in combination with low tides. Small A. spicifera were found in Nasese/Nasova (near Ratu Sukuna Road junction), Suva Harbour, Fiji attached to rocks; there was abundance of A. spicifera plants in Salia Reef (navigation mark opposite Nasova Police College), attached by holdfasts to rubble and soft corals; in Kaba Peninsula, Fiji, A, spicifera plants were common on rocky areas of the intertidal, usually on the headlands along this coast and particularly within 1 km of Kaba Point itself. Along the water line of Nukusasa sandbar, Fiji were unattached fragments of A. spicifera. A lot of A. spicifera plants were growing on the rocky weather side of Tokatoka ni Kubu Reef, Fiji. Attached to rocks in deeper water at the reef's edge in Cakalevu Reef, Fiji. In the south coast of Viwa Island, Fiji, along the fringing rocky shelf, A. spicifera plants were quite common down to about 1 m depth (Ref. 82232).

Life cycle and mating behavior Maturity | Reproduction | Spawning | Eggs | Fecundity | Larvae

Main reference References | Coordinator | Collaborators

Guiry, M.D. and G.M. Guiry. 2009. (Ref. 80701)

IUCN Red List Status (Ref. 120744)

CITES status (Ref. 108899)

Not Evaluated

CMS (Ref. 116361)

Not Evaluated

Threat to humans

  Harmless (Ref. 80758)

Human uses

Fisheries: commercial
| FishSource |


More information

FAO areas
Food items
Common names
Egg development

Internet sources

BHL | BOLD Systems | CISTI | DiscoverLife | FAO(Publication : search) | GenBank (genome, nucleotide) | GloBI | | Google Books | Google Scholar | Google | ispecies | PubMed | AlgaeBase | Tree of Life | Wikipedia (Go, Search) | Zoological Record

Estimates of some properties based on models

Preferred temperature (Ref. 115969): 23.6 - 29.2, mean 27.9 (based on 5085 cells).
Price category (Ref. 80766)