Three periods have been recognised in the history of Australian marine phycology (Ducker. 1981). The first was the period of early exploration when sailors and naturalists, especially the British and the French, returned to Europe with their collections. In the second period collections were made by resident Australians, and by W. H. Harvey, but described in Europe. The third person dates from the middle of the 19th century when Australian botanists described algae from their own collections. In the second period collections were made by resident Australians, and by W. H. Harvey, but described in Europe. The third period dates from the middle of the 19th century when Australian botanists described algae from their own collections. In the first two periods, ‘Sydney Harbour’ and ‘Port Jackson’ figured prominently as collecting localities and are the type localities for a number of species: for example, Claudea bennettiana Harvey, type locality Parramatta River, near the east end of Spectacle Island, Port Jackson; and Kallymenia brachycystidea J.Agardh, type locality Port Jackson. Despite this initial impetus the algae of Sydney region are still comparatively unknown, though there are some reasons why this should be the case. The algal flora of New South Wales is not nearly as rich as that of southern Austria and does not show such a high degree of endemism. At the same time there is no particular feature of interest, such as the Great Barrier Reef in Queensland, to attract phycologists to the area.
Until the SPCC (1981) report on the benthic flora and fauna of rocky shores in Botany Bay the only study with more than a passing reference to the Subtidal flora of the coast near Sydney was that of May et al. (1978), in which the algal epiphytes of seagrasses in Botany Bay were discussed. The present paper gives a preliminary description of the Subtidal flora at four sites in the Sydney region (two in Sydney Harbour, one in Middle Harbour, on in the lower Parramatta River) and provides some quantitative data on community structure.
How to Cite:
Farrant, P.A. and King, R.J., 2009. The Subtidal seaweed communities of the Sydney Region.. Wetlands Australia, 2(1), pp.pp. 51–60. DOI: http://doi.org/10.31646/wa.59