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Biogeography of Australian seaweeds

Huisman, J.M., Cowan, R.A.ORCID: 0000-0003-0417-2208 and De Clerck, O. (2017) Biogeography of Australian seaweeds. In: Ebach, M.C., (ed.) Handbook of Australasian Biogeography. CRC Press, Boca Raton, FL, USA, Ch 4.

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Marine benthic algae, or seaweeds, form a conspicuous element on most Australian coasts and are of considerable ecological importance, providing habitat, food and substratum stabilisation. Along with the seagrasses, the only angiosperms that have truly recolonised marine habitats, the seaweeds are the benthic primary producers that sustain most shallow coastal ecosystems. Australia is well known as a centre of biodiversity for seaweeds, with numerous species recorded and a particularly high percentage of endemic taxa, especially along the temperate southern coast (Phillips 2001; Kerswell 2006; Hommersand 2007). This chapter will review the biogeography of Australian seaweeds, including historical studies that have aimed to place the Australian ora in local and global scenarios, examine current thinking about the Australian biogeographic provinces and conclude with some of the exciting developments that will enhance seaweed taxonomic and biogeographic studies but at the same time introduce an entirely new suite of problems.

Item Type: Book Chapter
Publisher: CRC Press
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