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There are actually 2 plants observed here - the red fluffy algae is growing on the larger brown algae, called knotted wrack or Ascophyllum nodosum. The red algae is epiphytic, which is to say that it does not harm or assist its host - it just uses it as a base to grow from. Much like a moss on a tree trunk.
sorry about the duplicate post above!
We always say that a red filamentous seaweed growing on A. nodosum is P. lanosa. Has anyone checked in the field if there are any other possibilities?
Well - I am embroiled in this issue just now. But first, if it IS Polysiphonia lanosa and I am beginning the assume it inescapable, then it is now named Vertebrata lanosa.
But why are there so few close-ups of this 'weed'. Oh yes the are micro-photos but they are often of aspects or parts not easily seen by the amateur.
And so, read-on here http://www.ispotnature.org/node/376579
You did right here Jo.
One can only wait so long for original posters to respond - pabita (JETpabita) has probably left the arena, which is a pity because, although her Track is flawed, there is potential for a rare Marine poster.
As for Vertebrata lanosa - well, everyone agrees and I have agreed to ALL three but even pabita is correct!
A new season begins....
Although it is good to be aware of nomenclature changes it usually takes a while for the NBN to catch up (assuming they will accept the change). Currently, Polysiphonia lanosa is the NBN preferred name and brings up all the links for additional (useful) information. Vertebrata lanosa does not!
like to be up to date!
Lat/Lng: 55.070771, -1.450202
OS grid ref: NZ352752