Discovery of tiny new species of the genus Polysiphonia (Rhodophyta) from the subtidal zone in Korea
Kim, Byeongseok; Kim, Myung Sook
The fact that the subtidal zone is submerged at all times is important to consider when investigating macroalgal species diversity. Although the subtidal zone is a habitat for many species of red algae, the marine algal flora in the subtidal zone remains very poorly documented. By integrating morphological and molecular analyses, after intense study we discovered two tiny new species, Polysiphonia muninsula and Polysiphonia donghaeya, which were previously recognized as Polysiphonia atlantica in Korea. These two tiny new species inhabit at 5–20 m water depth in the Korean coast. The morphological characteristics of both new species correspond well with the genus Polysiphonia. They lack vegetative trichoblasts and are therefore morphologically distinguishable from P. atlantica in the British Isles. These new species differ from each other by the habitat they occupy and the shape of fertile trichoblasts. The phylogenetic analyses of rbcL sequences demonstrated that two new species are distinct from P. atlantica from the Atlantic Ocean (Spain and the eastern United States) as well as other species of Polysiphonia.