A red seaweed (Ceramium virgatum)

Distribution data supplied by the Ocean Biodiversity Information System (OBIS). To interrogate UK data visit the NBN Atlas.Map Help

Summary

Description

A small red seaweed growing up to 30 cm tall. It has a filamentous frond that is irregularly and dichotomously branched, with the branches narrowing towards pincer-like tips. The holdfast is a minute conical disc that extend into a dense mass of rhizoidal filaments. The plant is reddish-brown to purple in colour and has a banded appearance when viewed closely.

Recorded distribution in Britain and Ireland

Found on most suitable shores around Britain and Ireland.

Global distribution

Maggs & Hommersand (1993) note that the 'Ceramium rubrum complex' is widely distributed in the North Atlantic but the distribution of component species requires reassessment.

Habitat

Ceramium virgatum is both epilithic and epiphytic, often growing on the stipes and fronds of Fucus spp., Mastocarpus stellatus and Laminaria hyperborea as well as on the leaves of Zostera marina in the subtidal. It is frequent on Codium fragile subsp. Tomentosoides in intertidal rockpools (F. Rindi, pers. comm.).

Depth range

-

Identifying features

  • Deep clear red (but may be bleached).
  • Fronds to 30 cm length gradually attenuating upwards.
  • Axes 0.5 to 1 mm in diameter basally but may be swollen or nodular.
  • Fronds irregularly dichotomous, often with lateral branches which may be simple, forked or repeatedly dichotomous.
  • Apices straight of forcipate.

Additional information

Discrimination of separate species of Ceramium is often difficult. This species can be identified with certainty only by careful microscopic observation and in the field can be easily confused with other species of Ceramium with similar morphology namely Ceramium botryocarpum, Ceramium pallidum and Ceramium secundatum (F. Rindi, pers. comm.). The above taxonomy uses the recent nomenclature from Hardy & Guiry (2003). The confusion concerning Ceramium nodulosum and Ceramium rubrum was discussed by Maggs et al. (2002).

Listed by

- none -

Biology review

Taxonomy

LevelScientific nameCommon name
PhylumRhodophyta
ClassFlorideophyceae
OrderCeramiales
FamilyCeramiaceae
GenusCeramium
AuthorityRoth, 1797
Recent SynonymsCeramium nodulosum Roth, 1797Ceramium rubrum Roth, 1797

Biology

ParameterData
Typical abundanceHigh density
Male size range3-30cm
Male size at maturity
Female size rangeMedium-large(21-50cm)
Female size at maturity
Growth formFiliform / filamentous
Growth rateSee additional information
Body flexibilityHigh (greater than 45 degrees)
MobilityNot relevant
Characteristic feeding methodAutotroph
Diet/food source
Typically feeds onNot relevant
Sociability
Environmental positionEpifloral
DependencySee additional information.
SupportsNone
Is the species harmful?No

Biology information

Ceramium virgatum colonizes rock and algal habitats from the midshore in rockpools to the open shore near to low water level and in the shallow subtidal (see Maggs & Hommersand, 1993). It also grows attached to the leaves of Zostera marina (see, for instance, Whelan & Cullinane, 1985). It occurs on bedrock through to pebbles. Dickinson (1963) notes that the species is either perennial or pseudoperennial. Settlement onto new surfaces can be rapid. For instance, panels were colonized within a month of being placed in Langstone Harbour (Brown et al., 2001)

Habitat preferences

ParameterData
Physiographic preferencesOpen coast, Strait or Sound, Sea loch or Sea lough, Ria or Voe, Estuary, Enclosed coast or Embayment
Biological zone preferencesLower eulittoral, Mid eulittoral, Sublittoral fringe, Upper infralittoral
Substratum / habitat preferencesMacroalgae, Artificial (man-made), Cobbles, Gravel / shingle, Pebbles, Rockpools
Tidal strength preferencesVery weak (negligible), Weak < 1 knot (<0.5 m/sec.)
Wave exposure preferencesExposed, Extremely exposed, Extremely sheltered, Moderately exposed, Sheltered, Very exposed, Very sheltered
Salinity preferencesFull (30-40 psu), Variable (18-40 psu)
Depth range
Other preferences
Migration PatternNon-migratory or resident

Habitat Information

Ceramium virgatum may be particularly abundant in the summer. It thrives in rockpools and occurs in still water situations where dilution with freshwater is likely to occur.

Life history

Adult characteristics

ParameterData
Reproductive typeAlternation of generations
Reproductive frequency Annual protracted
Fecundity (number of eggs)>1,000,000
Generation timeSee additional information
Age at maturityInsufficient information
SeasonSee additional information
Life span2-5 years

Larval characteristics

ParameterData
Larval/propagule type-
Larval/juvenile development Spores (sexual / asexual)
Duration of larval stageSee additional information
Larval dispersal potential See additional information
Larval settlement period

Life history information

Edwards (1973) reports that Ceramium virgatum (as rubrum) has a triphasic life history consisting of a sequence of gametophytic, carposporophytic and tetrasporophytic phases in which the first and the third are morphologically similar. Maggs & Hommersand (1993) report that spermatangia are recorded in January, March-April, June and August-September; cystocarps in January-February and April-September; tetrasporangia in February-September. Although no information on dispersal has been found directly for Ceramium virgatum, Norton (1992) concluded that dispersal potential is highly variable in seaweeds. Spores of Ulva sp. (as Enteromorpha) have been reported to travel 35 km, Phycodrys rubens 5 km and Sargassum muticum up to 1 km. However, the point is made that reach of the furthest propagule and useful dispersal range are not the same thing and recruitment usually occurs on a much more local scale, typically within 10 m of the parent plant.

Sensitivity reviewHow is sensitivity assessed?

Physical pressures

Use / to open/close text displayed

 IntoleranceRecoverabilitySensitivityEvidence / Confidence
Substratum loss [Show more]

Substratum loss

Benchmark. All of the substratum occupied by the species or biotope under consideration is removed. A single event is assumed for sensitivity assessment. Once the activity or event has stopped (or between regular events) suitable substratum remains or is deposited. Species or community recovery assumes that the substratum within the habitat preferences of the original species or community is present. Further details

Evidence

Plants will be removed with the substratum and therefore intolerance is high. Recoverability is expected to be very high: see additional information below.
High Very high Low Moderate
Smothering [Show more]

Smothering

Benchmark. All of the population of a species or an area of a biotope is smothered by sediment to a depth of 5 cm above the substratum for one month. Impermeable materials, such as concrete, oil, or tar, are likely to have a greater effect. Further details.

Evidence

Ceramium virgatum is an erect species which grows up to 20 cm in length. Filamentous algae generally have delicate thalli and can therefore be expected to be sensitive to smothering (F. Rindi, pers. comm.). In addition, developing propagules are likely to be buried by 5 cm of sediment and would be unable to photosynthesize. For example, Vadas et al. (1992) stated that algal spores and propagules are adversely affected by a layer of sediment, which can exclude up to 98% of light. There is therefore likely to be some mortality of the population and intolerance is assessed as intermediate. Recoverability is expected to be very high: see additional information below.
Intermediate Very high Low Moderate
Increase in suspended sediment [Show more]

Increase in suspended sediment

Benchmark. An arbitrary short-term, acute change in background suspended sediment concentration e.g., a change of 100 mg/l for one month. The resultant light attenuation effects are addressed under turbidity, and the effects of rapid settling out of suspended sediment are addressed under smothering. Further details

Evidence

Ceramium virgatum is not likely to be affected directly by an increase in suspended sediment. However, increased suspended sediment will increase light attenuation (considered in 'turbidity') and siltation. As discussed above in 'smothering', increased rate of siltation may inhibit development of algal spores and propagules resulting in some mortality. However, Hily et al. (1992) observed that, in conditions of high turbidity, Ceramium virgatum (as C. rubrum) (and Ulva sp.) dominated sediments in the Bay of Brest, France. The effects of increased suspended sediment are therefore equivocal but, because some deeper populations are likely to be adversely affected by reduction in light penetration and because of possible smothering, overall an intolerance of intermediate is suggested. Recovery is expected to be very high: see additional information below.
Intermediate Very high Low Low
Decrease in suspended sediment [Show more]

Decrease in suspended sediment

Benchmark. An arbitrary short-term, acute change in background suspended sediment concentration e.g., a change of 100 mg/l for one month. The resultant light attenuation effects are addressed under turbidity, and the effects of rapid settling out of suspended sediment are addressed under smothering. Further details

Evidence

Ceramium virgatum is likely to benefit from a decrease in suspended sediment through effects of increased light penetration (see decreased turbidity below).
Tolerant* Not relevant Not sensitive* High
Desiccation [Show more]

Desiccation

  1. A normally subtidal, demersal or pelagic species including intertidal migratory or under-boulder species is continuously exposed to air and sunshine for one hour.
  2. A normally intertidal species or community is exposed to a change in desiccation equivalent to a change in position of one vertical biological zone on the shore, e.g., from upper eulittoral to the mid eulittoral or from sublittoral fringe to lower eulittoral for a period of one year. Further details.

Evidence

Ceramium virgatum occurs profusely in rockpools, on the lower shore and in the subtidal but not on the open shore away from damp places suggesting that it is intolerant of desiccation. Recovery is expected to be very high: see additional information below.
High Very high Low Moderate
Increase in emergence regime [Show more]

Increase in emergence regime

Benchmark. A one hour change in the time covered or not covered by the sea for a period of one year. Further details

Evidence

Ceramium virgatum occurs on the lower shore and in the subtidal suggesting that it is intolerant of high amounts of emergence. Recovery is expected to be very high: see additional information below.
Intermediate Very high Low High
Decrease in emergence regime [Show more]

Decrease in emergence regime

Benchmark. A one hour change in the time covered or not covered by the sea for a period of one year. Further details

Evidence

Ceramium virgatum occurs predominantly in rockpools and in the subtidal and could potentially benefit from a decrease in emergence regime.
Tolerant Not relevant Not sensitive Moderate
Increase in water flow rate [Show more]

Increase in water flow rate

A change of two categories in water flow rate (view glossary) for 1 year, for example, from moderately strong (1-3 knots) to very weak (negligible). Further details

Evidence

Moderate water movement is beneficial to seaweeds as it carries a supply of nutrients and gases to the plants, removes waste products, and prevents settling of silt. However, if flow becomes too strong, plants may be displaced. Additionally, an increase to stronger flows may inhibit settlement of spores and remove adults or germlings. It is likely therefore that the benchmark increase in water flow rate to 'strong' or 'very strong' flow would result in some mortality, particularly of older individuals or those attached to the least stable substrata. Intolerance is therefore assessed as intermediate. Recoverability is recorded as very high (see additional information below).
Intermediate Very high Low Moderate
Decrease in water flow rate [Show more]

Decrease in water flow rate

A change of two categories in water flow rate (view glossary) for 1 year, for example, from moderately strong (1-3 knots) to very weak (negligible). Further details

Evidence

Ceramium virgatum occurs in conditions of weak or very weak tidal streams (for instance, it is characteristic in the biotope 'Laminaria saccharina and Laminaria digitata on sheltered sublittoral fringe rock - SIR.Lsac.Ldig' (Connor et al. 1997a) and is recorded from some of the most sheltered parts of Hardangerfjord in Norway (Jorde & Klavestad, 1963). It is therefore expected that, providing stagnation and deoxygenation do not occur, the species will be not sensitive.
Tolerant Not relevant Not sensitive Moderate
Increase in temperature [Show more]

Increase in temperature

  1. A short-term, acute change in temperature; e.g., a 5°C change in the temperature range for three consecutive days. This definition includes ‘short-term’ thermal discharges.
  2. A long-term, chronic change in temperature; e.g. a 2°C change in the temperature range for a year. This definition includes ‘long term’ thermal discharges.

For intertidal species or communities, the range of temperatures includes the air temperature regime for that species or community. Further details

Evidence

Lüning (1990) records that Ceramium virgatum (as rubrum) survives at temperatures from 0 to 25°C with optimal growth at about 15°C. The species is therefore likely to be tolerant of higher temperatures than it experiences in the seas around Britain and Ireland. Temperatures in rockpools are recorded by Morris & Taylor (1983) and by Goss-Custard et al. (1979) as rising to or slightly above 25°C. However, rockpool temperatures could rise significantly above 25°C and some mortality may occur in exceptional conditions. Photosynthesis and growth may also be compromised by high temperatures. Intolerance is therefore recorded as low. Physiological processes should quickly return to normal when temperatures return to their original levels so recoverability is recorded as very high.
Low Very high Very Low Low
Decrease in temperature [Show more]

Decrease in temperature

  1. A short-term, acute change in temperature; e.g., a 5°C change in the temperature range for three consecutive days. This definition includes ‘short-term’ thermal discharges.
  2. A long-term, chronic change in temperature; e.g. a 2°C change in the temperature range for a year. This definition includes ‘long term’ thermal discharges.

For intertidal species or communities, the range of temperatures includes the air temperature regime for that species or community. Further details

Evidence

Lüning (1990) records that Ceramium virgatum (as rubrum) survives at temperatures from 0 to 25°C with optimal growth at about 15°C. The species is therefore likely to be tolerant of lower temperatures than it experiences in the seas around Britain and Ireland. No information has been found of the effects of very cold conditions but, since the species is not immersed for a significant length of time, adverse effects are not expected directly. Sub-optimal temperatures may delay or slow reproduction so an intolerance of low is suggested.
Low Very high Very Low Low
Increase in turbidity [Show more]

Increase in turbidity

  1. A short-term, acute change; e.g., two categories of the water clarity scale (see glossary) for one month, such as from medium to extreme turbidity.
  2. A long-term, chronic change; e.g., one category of the water clarity scale (see glossary) for one year, such as from low to medium turbidity. Further details

Evidence

Hily et al. (1992) found that, in conditions of high turbidity, Ceramium virgatum (as C. rubrum) (and Ulva sp.) dominated sediments in the Bay of Brest, France. It is most likely that Ceramium thrived because other species of algae could not. Whilst the field observations in the Bay of Brest suggests that an increase in abundance of Ceramium virgatum might be expected in conditions of increased turbidity, populations where light becomes limiting will be adversely affected. In shallow depths, Ceramium virgatum may benefit from increased turbidity whilst, near its lower depth limit, it may decline. The available information is therefore equivocal. In the absence of an intolerance assessment of 'equivocal', 'tolerant' is suggested, albeit with a very low confidence.
Tolerant Not relevant Not sensitive Very low
Decrease in turbidity [Show more]

Decrease in turbidity

  1. A short-term, acute change; e.g., two categories of the water clarity scale (see glossary) for one month, such as from medium to extreme turbidity.
  2. A long-term, chronic change; e.g., one category of the water clarity scale (see glossary) for one year, such as from low to medium turbidity. Further details

Evidence

A decrease in turbidity would result in greater light availability for Ceramium virgatum and potentially potential benefit from the factor. However, the work of Hily et al. (1992) suggests that other species might out-compete Ceramium virgatum as nodulosum in lower turbidity situations. In the absence of an intolerance assessment of 'equivocal', 'tolerant' is suggested, albeit with a very low confidence.
Tolerant Not relevant Not sensitive
Increase in wave exposure [Show more]

Increase in wave exposure

A change of two ranks on the wave exposure scale (view glossary) e.g., from Exposed to Extremely exposed for a period of one year. Further details

Evidence

Ceramium virgatum occurs in extremely wave sheltered conditions (for instance, it is characteristic in the biotope 'Laminaria saccharina and Laminaria digitata on sheltered sublittoral fringe rock - SIR.Lsac.Ldig' (Connor et al. 1997a) and is recorded in some of the most sheltered parts of Hardangerfjord in Norway (Jorde & Klavestad, 1963). Strong wave action is likely to cause some damage to fronds resulting in reduced photosynthesis and compromised growth. Furthermore, individuals may be damaged or dislodged by scouring from sand and gravel mobilized by increased wave action (Hiscock, 1983). Mortality of at least a part of the population is likely due to increased wave exposure and so intolerance is assessed as intermediate. Recovery is expected to be very high: see additional information below.
Intermediate Very high Low Moderate
Decrease in wave exposure [Show more]

Decrease in wave exposure

A change of two ranks on the wave exposure scale (view glossary) e.g., from Exposed to Extremely exposed for a period of one year. Further details

Evidence

Ceramium virgatum occurs in extremely wave sheltered conditions (for instance, it is characteristic in the biotope 'Laminaria saccharina and Laminaria digitata on sheltered sublittoral fringe rock - SIR.Lsac.Ldig' (Connor et al. 1997a) and is recorded in some of the most sheltered parts of Hardangerfjord in Norway (Jorde & Klavestad, 1963). Decrease in wave exposure is therefore unlikely to be an adverse factor.
Tolerant Not relevant Not sensitive High
Noise [Show more]

Noise

  1. Underwater noise levels e.g., the regular passing of a 30-metre trawler at 100 metres or a working cutter-suction transfer dredge at 100 metres for one month during important feeding or breeding periods.
  2. Atmospheric noise levels e.g., the regular passing of a Boeing 737 passenger jet 300 metres overhead for one month during important feeding or breeding periods. Further details

Evidence

Algae have no mechanisms for detection of sound and, therefore, would be not sensitive to disturbance by noise.
Tolerant Not relevant Not sensitive High
Visual presence [Show more]

Visual presence

Benchmark. The continuous presence for one month of moving objects not naturally found in the marine environment (e.g., boats, machinery, and humans) within the visual envelope of the species or community under consideration. Further details

Evidence

Algae have no visual acuity and, therefore, would not be affected by visual disturbance.
Tolerant Not relevant Not sensitive High
Abrasion & physical disturbance [Show more]

Abrasion & physical disturbance

Benchmark. Force equivalent to a standard scallop dredge landing on or being dragged across the organism. A single event is assumed for assessment. This factor includes mechanical interference, crushing, physical blows against, or rubbing and erosion of the organism or habitat of interest. Where trampling is relevant, the evidence and trampling intensity will be reported in the rationale. Further details.

Evidence

Filamentous algae generally have delicate thalli (F. Rindi, pers. comm.) and can therefore be expected to be sensitive to abrasion. In addition, the fronds appear loosely attached and would not be expected to be resistant to physical impacts. Furthermore, individuals may be damaged or dislodged by scouring from sand and gravel mobilized by increased wave action (Hiscock, 1983) and abrasion at the level set in the benchmark is likely to have a similar effect. Physical abrasion would therefore probably result in destruction of at least erect parts of the plant and loss of some whole plants. Intolerance is assessed as high. For recoverability, see additional information below.
High Very high Low Moderate
Displacement [Show more]

Displacement

Benchmark. Removal of the organism from the substratum and displacement from its original position onto a suitable substratum. A single event is assumed for assessment. Further details

Evidence

It is unlikely that the holdfast would survive removal from the substratum and be able to reattach to a new substratum. Intolerance is therefore assessed as high. Recoverability is recorded as very high (see additional information below).
High Very high Low Moderate

Chemical pressures

Use [show more] / [show less] to open/close text displayed

 IntoleranceRecoverabilitySensitivityEvidence / Confidence
Synthetic compound contamination [Show more]

Synthetic compound contamination

Sensitivity is assessed against the available evidence for the effects of contaminants on the species (or closely related species at low confidence) or community of interest. For example:

  • evidence of mass mortality of a population of the species or community of interest (either short or long term) in response to a contaminant will be ranked as high sensitivity;
  • evidence of reduced abundance, or extent of a population of the species or community of interest (either short or long term) in response to a contaminant will be ranked as intermediate sensitivity;
  • evidence of sub-lethal effects or reduced reproductive potential of a population of the species or community of interest will be assessed as low sensitivity.

The evidence used is stated in the rationale. Where the assessment can be based on a known activity then this is stated. The tolerance to contaminants of species of interest will be included in the rationale when available; together with relevant supporting material. Further details.

Evidence

Ceramium virgatum seems to be intolerant of at least some synthetic chemicals. In studies of the effect of chromated copper arsenate wood preservative, Brown et al. (2001) found that a significantly higher coverage of Ceramium nodulosum occurred on untreated wood after four weeks. Hardy (1993, cited in Holt et al., 1995) observed that Ceramium nodulosum (as Ceramium rubrum) was lost between 1923 and 1991 from the mouth of the (polluted) Tees Estuary. Inferences may also be drawn from the sensitivities of red algal species generally. O'Brien & Dixon (1976) suggested that red algae were the most sensitive group of algae to oil or dispersant contamination, possibly due to the susceptibility of phycoerythrins to destruction. They also report that red algae are effective indicators of detergent damage since they undergo colour changes when exposed to relatively low concentration of detergent. Smith (1968) reported that 10 ppm of the detergent BP 1002 killed the majority of specimens of Ceramium virgatum (as Ceramium rubrum) in 24hrs in toxicity tests. Laboratory studies of the effects of oil and dispersants on several red algal species concluded that they were all sensitive to oil/ dispersant mixtures, with little difference between adults, sporelings, diploid or haploid life stages (Grandy, 1984, cited in Holt et al., 1995). Cole et al. (1999) suggested that herbicides , such as simazine and atrazine were very toxic to macrophytes. The evidence suggests that in general red algae are very intolerant of synthetic chemicals. Intolerance of Ceramium virgatum is therefore recorded as high. Recoverability is recorded as very high (see additional information below).
High Very high Low Moderate
Heavy metal contamination [Show more]

Heavy metal contamination

Evidence

Bryan (1984) suggested that the general order for heavy metal toxicity in seaweeds is: Organic Hg > inorganic Hg > Cu > Ag > Zn > Cd > Pb. Cole et al. (1999) reported that Hg was very toxic to macrophytes. The sub-lethal effects of Hg (organic and inorganic) on the sporelings of an intertidal red algae, Plumaria elegans, were reported by Boney (1971). 100% growth inhibition was caused by 1 ppm Hg. No information was found concerning the effects of heavy metals on Ceramium nodulosum specifically, and therefore an intolerance assessment has not been attempted.
No information Not relevant No information Not relevant
Hydrocarbon contamination [Show more]

Hydrocarbon contamination

Evidence

Smith (1968) records that Ceramium virgatum (as Ceramium rubrum) was killed during the Torrey Canyon oil spill. O'Brien & Dixon (1976) suggested that red algae were the most sensitive group of algae to oil or dispersant contamination, possibly due to the susceptibility of phycoerythrins to destruction. Laboratory studies of the effects of oil and dispersants on several red algal species concluded that they were all sensitive to oil/ dispersant mixtures, with little difference between adults, sporelings, diploid or haploid life stages (Grandy, 1984, cited in Holt et al., 1995). Recoverability is recorded as very high (see additional information below).
High Very high Low Moderate
Radionuclide contamination [Show more]

Radionuclide contamination

Evidence

No evidence was found concerning the intolerance of Ceramium nodulosum to radionuclide contamination.
No information Not relevant No information Not relevant
Changes in nutrient levels [Show more]

Changes in nutrient levels

Evidence

Hily et al. (1992) found that, in conditions of high nutrients, Ceramium virgatum (as Ceramium rubrum) (and Ulva sp.) dominated sediments in the Bay of Brest, France. Ceramium spp. are also mentioned by Holt et al. (1995) as likely to smother other species of macroalgae in nutrient enriched waters. Fletcher (1995) cites Johnston (1971/72) as associating Ceramium nodulosum (as Ceramium rubrum) with eutrophicated waters. It therefore seems that populations of Ceramium virgatum are likely to benefit from nutrification.
Tolerant* Not relevant Not sensitive* High
Increase in salinity [Show more]

Increase in salinity

  1. A short-term, acute change; e.g., a change of two categories from the MNCR salinity scale for one week (view glossary) such as from full to reduced.
  2. A long-term, chronic change; e.g., a change of one category from the MNCR salinity scale for one year (view glossary) such as from reduced to low. Further details.

Evidence

Ceramium virgatum occurs in full salinity conditions. Although no information has been found on survival in hypersaline conditions, Ceramium virgatum occurs in rockpools where evaporation may occasionally lead to higher than normal salinities. However, occurrence of the species in full salinity, leads to an intolerance assessment of not relevant.
Not relevant Not relevant Not relevant High
Decrease in salinity [Show more]

Decrease in salinity

  1. A short-term, acute change; e.g., a change of two categories from the MNCR salinity scale for one week (view glossary) such as from full to reduced.
  2. A long-term, chronic change; e.g., a change of one category from the MNCR salinity scale for one year (view glossary) such as from reduced to low. Further details.

Evidence

Ceramium virgatum occurs over a very wide range of salinities. The species penetrates almost to the innermost part of Hardanger Fjord in Norway where it experiences very low salinity values and large salinity fluctuations due to the influence of snowmelt in spring (Jorde & Klavestad, 1963). It is likely therefore that the benchmark decrease in salinity would not result in mortality, but photosynthesis would not be optimal and so growth and reproduction may be compromised. Intolerance is therefore assessed as low. Physiological processes should quickly return to normal when salinity returns to original levels, so recoverability is recorded as very high.
Low Very high Very Low High
Changes in oxygenation [Show more]

Changes in oxygenation

Benchmark.  Exposure to a dissolved oxygen concentration of 2 mg/l for one week. Further details.

Evidence

The effects of reduced oxygenation on algae are not well studied. Plants require oxygen for respiration, but this may be provided by production of oxygen during periods of photosynthesis. Lack of oxygen may impair both respiration and photosynthesis (see review by Vidaver, 1972). A study of the effects of anoxia on another red alga, Delesseria sanguinea, revealed that specimens died after 24 hours at 15°C but that some survived at 5°C (Hammer, 1972). Insufficient
information is available to make an intolerance assessment for Ceramium virgatum.
No information Not relevant No information Not relevant

Biological pressures

Use [show more] / [show less] to open/close text displayed

 IntoleranceRecoverabilitySensitivityEvidence / Confidence
Introduction of microbial pathogens/parasites [Show more]

Introduction of microbial pathogens/parasites

Benchmark. Sensitivity can only be assessed relative to a known, named disease, likely to cause partial loss of a species population or community. Further details.

Evidence

No information has been found.
No information Not relevant No information Not relevant
Introduction of non-native species [Show more]

Introduction of non-native species

Sensitivity assessed against the likely effect of the introduction of alien or non-native species in Britain or Ireland. Further details.

Evidence

The habitat preferences of the gametangial phase of the non-native species Asparagopsis armata and of Ceramium virgatum are likely to overlap and Asparagopsis armata may displace some of the population of Ceramium virgatum. However, no evidence has been found to confrim displacement. In contrast, F. Rindi (pers. comm.) has noted that Ceramium virgatum is frequently epiphytic on Codium fragile subsp. Tomentosoides and therefore it can be facilitated rather than inhibited by this introduced species. Accordingly, tolerant* has been recorded but with low evidence.
Tolerant* Very high Not sensitive* Low
Extraction of this species [Show more]

Extraction of this species

Benchmark. Extraction removes 50% of the species or community from the area under consideration. Sensitivity will be assessed as 'intermediate'. The habitat remains intact or recovers rapidly. Any effects of the extraction process on the habitat itself are addressed under other factors, e.g. displacement, abrasion and physical disturbance, and substratum loss. Further details.

Evidence

There is no extraction of Ceramium virgatum known to occur.
Not relevant Not relevant Not relevant Not relevant
Extraction of other species [Show more]

Extraction of other species

Benchmark. A species that is a required host or prey for the species under consideration (and assuming that no alternative host exists) or a keystone species in a biotope is removed. Any effects of the extraction process on the habitat itself are addressed under other factors, e.g. displacement, abrasion and physical disturbance, and substratum loss. Further details.

Evidence

No species are known to be extracted that might lead to loss of Ceramium virgatum.
Not relevant Not relevant Not relevant Not relevant

Additional information

Recoverability is likely to be very high as settlement and growth appears to be rapid at least at appropriate times of year. Brown et al. (2001) found that the alga had settled onto panels within four weeks of their placement in Langstone Harbour. Recolonization may, however, be delayed if the hydrodynamic regime does not allow a supply of spores from distant populations.

Importance review

Policy/legislation

- no data -

Status

Non-native

ParameterData
Native-
Origin-
Date Arrived-

Importance information

The filamentous structure of Ceramium virgatum most likely provides a habitat for small molluscs and crustaceans.

Bibliography

  1. Brown, C.J., Eaton, R.A. & Thorp, C.H. 2001. Effects of chromated copper arsenate (CCA) wood preservative on early fouling community formation. Marine Pollution Bulletin, 42, 1103-1113.

  2. Cole, S., Codling, I.D., Parr, W. & Zabel, T., 1999. Guidelines for managing water quality impacts within UK European Marine sites. Natura 2000 report prepared for the UK Marine SACs Project. 441 pp., Swindon: Water Research Council on behalf of EN, SNH, CCW, JNCC, SAMS and EHS. [UK Marine SACs Project.]. Available from: http://ukmpa.marinebiodiversity.org/uk_sacs/pdfs/water_quality.pdf

  3. Connor, D.W., Dalkin, M.J., Hill, T.O., Holt, R.H.F. & Sanderson, W.G., 1997a. Marine biotope classification for Britain and Ireland. Vol. 2. Sublittoral biotopes. Joint Nature Conservation Committee, Peterborough, JNCC Report no. 230, Version 97.06., Joint Nature Conservation Committee, Peterborough, JNCC Report no. 230, Version 97.06.

  4. Dickinson, C.I., 1963. British seaweeds. London & Frome: Butler & Tanner Ltd.

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  6. Fish, J.D. & Fish, S., 1996. A student's guide to the seashore. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

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  8. Hammer, L., 1972. Anaerobiosis in marine algae and marine phanerograms. In Proceedings of the Seventh International Seaweed Symposium, Sapporo, Japan, August 8-12, 1971 (ed. K. Nisizawa, S. Arasaki, Chihara, M., Hirose, H., Nakamura V., Tsuchiya, Y.), pp. 414-419. Tokyo: Tokyo University Press.

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  10. Hily, C., Potin, P. & Floch, J.Y. 1992. Structure of subtidal algal assemblages on soft-bottom sediments - fauna flora interactions and role of disturbances in the Bay of Brest, France. Marine Ecology Progress Series, 85, 115-130.

  11. Hiscock, K., 1983. Water movement. In Sublittoral ecology. The ecology of shallow sublittoral benthos (ed. R. Earll & D.G. Erwin), pp. 58-96. Oxford: Clarendon Press.

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  14. Jorde, I. & Klavestad, N., 1963. The natural history of the Hardangerfjord. 4. The benthonic algal vegetation. Sarsia, 9, 1-99.

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  16. Maggs, C.A., Ward, B.A., McIvor, L.M., Evans, C.M., Rueness, J. & Stanhope, M.J., 2002. Molecular analyses elucidate the taxonomy of fully corticated, nonspiny species of Ceramium (Ceramiaceae, Rhodophyta) in the British Isles. Phycologia, 41, 409-420.

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  18. Norton, T.A., 1992. Dispersal by macroalgae. British Phycological Journal, 27, 293-301.

  19. O'Brien, P.J. & Dixon, P.S., 1976. Effects of oils and oil components on algae: a review. British Phycological Journal, 11, 115-142.

  20. Smith, J.E. (ed.), 1968. 'Torrey Canyon'. Pollution and marine life. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

  21. Vadas, R.L., Johnson, S. & Norton, T.A., 1992. Recruitment and mortality of early post-settlement stages of benthic algae. British Phycological Journal, 27, 331-351.

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Datasets

  1. Centre for Environmental Data and Recording, 2018. Ulster Museum Marine Surveys of Northern Ireland Coastal Waters. Occurrence dataset https://www.nmni.com/CEDaR/CEDaR-Centre-for-Environmental-Data-and-Recording.aspx accessed via NBNAtlas.org on 2018-09-25.

  2. Environmental Records Information Centre North East, 2018. ERIC NE Combined dataset to 2017. Occurrence dataset: http://www.ericnortheast.org.ukl accessed via NBNAtlas.org on 2018-09-38

  3. Fife Nature Records Centre, 2018. St Andrews BioBlitz 2014. Occurrence dataset: https://doi.org/10.15468/erweal accessed via GBIF.org on 2018-09-27.

  4. Fife Nature Records Centre, 2018. St Andrews BioBlitz 2015. Occurrence dataset: https://doi.org/10.15468/xtrbvy accessed via GBIF.org on 2018-09-27.

  5. Fife Nature Records Centre, 2018. St Andrews BioBlitz 2016. Occurrence dataset: https://doi.org/10.15468/146yiz accessed via GBIF.org on 2018-09-27.

  6. Kent Wildlife Trust, 2018. Biological survey of the intertidal chalk reefs between Folkestone Warren and Kingsdown, Kent 2009-2011. Occurrence dataset: https://www.kentwildlifetrust.org.uk/ accessed via NBNAtlas.org on 2018-10-01.

  7. Kent Wildlife Trust, 2018. Kent Wildlife Trust Shoresearch Intertidal Survey 2004 onwards. Occurrence dataset: https://www.kentwildlifetrust.org.uk/ accessed via NBNAtlas.org on 2018-10-01.

  8. Lancashire Environment Record Network, 2018. LERN Records. Occurrence dataset: https://doi.org/10.15468/esxc9a accessed via GBIF.org on 2018-10-01.

  9. Manx Biological Recording Partnership, 2017. Isle of Man wildlife records from 01/01/2000 to 13/02/2017. Occurrence dataset: https://doi.org/10.15468/mopwow accessed via GBIF.org on 2018-10-01.

  10. Manx Biological Recording Partnership, 2018. Isle of Man historical wildlife records 1990 to 1994. Occurrence dataset: https://doi.org/10.15468/aru16v accessed via GBIF.org on 2018-10-01.

  11. Manx Biological Recording Partnership, 2018. Isle of Man historical wildlife records 1995 to 1999. Occurrence dataset: https://doi.org/10.15468/lo2tge accessed via GBIF.org on 2018-10-01.

  12. Merseyside BioBank., 2018. Merseyside BioBank (unverified). Occurrence dataset: https://doi.org/10.15468/iou2ld accessed via GBIF.org on 2018-10-01.

  13. National Trust, 2017. National Trust Species Records. Occurrence dataset: https://doi.org/10.15468/opc6g1 accessed via GBIF.org on 2018-10-01.

  14. NBN (National Biodiversity Network) Atlas. Available from: https://www.nbnatlas.org.

  15. OBIS (Ocean Biodiversity Information System),  2024. Global map of species distribution using gridded data. Available from: Ocean Biogeographic Information System. www.iobis.org. Accessed: 2024-06-25

  16. Outer Hebrides Biological Recording, 2018. Non-vascular Plants, Outer Hebrides. Occurrence dataset: https://doi.org/10.15468/goidos accessed via GBIF.org on 2018-10-01.

  17. South East Wales Biodiversity Records Centre, 2018. SEWBReC Algae and allied species (South East Wales). Occurrence dataset: https://doi.org/10.15468/55albd accessed via GBIF.org on 2018-10-02.

  18. South East Wales Biodiversity Records Centre, 2018. Dr Mary Gillham Archive Project. Occurance dataset: http://www.sewbrec.org.uk/ accessed via NBNAtlas.org on 2018-10-02

Citation

This review can be cited as:

Hiscock, K. & Pizzolla, P. 2007. Ceramium virgatum A red seaweed. In Tyler-Walters H. and Hiscock K. Marine Life Information Network: Biology and Sensitivity Key Information Reviews, [on-line]. Plymouth: Marine Biological Association of the United Kingdom. [cited 25-06-2024]. Available from: https://marlin.ac.uk/species/detail/1476

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Last Updated: 07/06/2007