A new taxonomic study, “The Marine Benthic Algal Flora of Puerto Rico Part I” published by the Smithsonian Institution is partly based on NCCOS supported research collections in shallow and mesophotic coral ecosystems. Part I features the phylum Ochrophyta, which includes brown algae, and provides information on 77 algal species occurring in the benthic marine communities in Puerto Rico. The study provides details on the distribution of each species, their habitat, and taxonomic and nomenclature status.
The study builds on the work of the lead author, Dr. David L. Ballantine of the Smithsonian Institution. The first complete list of the marine benthic algal flora of Puerto Rico was compiled by Almodóvar and Ballantine (1983) and reported 384 species (excluding the Cyanophyta). Ballantine and Aponte (1997) revised this list and recognized 473 species. A subsequent 2002 revision, A Checklist of the Benthic Marine Algae Known to Puerto Rico, recorded 492 species of algae, including macroscopic Chrysophyceae and Xanthophyceae from Puerto Rico (excluding the Cyanophyta).
This study was supported in part by NCCOS under the Coral Reef Ecosystem Studies (CRES) and Deep Coral Reef Ecosystem Studies (Deep-CRES) Programs. Other groups of Puerto Rico benthic algae revisions will be treated in forthcoming parts.
New Publication: Ballantine, David, James N. Norris and Hector Ruiz. 2021. The Marine Benthic Algal Flora of Puerto Rico, I. Ochrophyta: Phaeophyceae, Pelagophyceae, and Xanthophyceae. Smithsonian Contributions to Botany, No. 114. Washington, D.C.: Smithsonian Institution Scholarly Press. Book. https://doi.org/10.5479/si.16709413
Almodóvar, L. R. and D. L. Ballantine. 1983. Checklist of Benthic Marine Macroalgae plus Additional Species Records from Puerto Rico. Caribbean Journal of Science 19: 7–20.
Ballantine, D. L. and N. E. Aponte. 1997. A Revised Checklist of the Benthic Marine Algae Known to Puerto Rico. Caribbean Journal of Science 33: 150–179.