Biology of Seaweeds Kelp Beds and Forests Biology

Biology of Seaweeds  Kelp Beds and Forests Biology

Biology of Seaweeds Kelp Beds and Forests Biology of Seaweeds Kelp Beds and Forests Kelp is the collective term referring to very large brown algae dominating cold water regions of the earth. Biology of Seaweeds Kelp Beds and Forests

If the algae do not form a surface canopy, the algal communities are referred to as kelp beds. If the algae do form a

surface canopy, the algal communities are referred to as kelp forests. Biology of Seaweeds Kelp Beds and Forests Kelp beds are dominated by the genera Laminaria, Pterygophora, and Ecklonia. Kelp forests are dominated by the genera Macrocystis and Nereocystis.

In contrast to most algae, the kelp forest algae grow to 30 meters or more. These algae actually block most of the sunlight, resulting communities of understory algae forming layers bellow them Kelp forest communities are also highly productive areas; e.g. Nereocystis luetkeana has been recorded with growth rates of 6 cm/day and Macrocystis pyrifera commonly grows 50 cm/day or more

Biology of Seaweeds Kelp Forests and their Understory Communities 1. Small filamenous species. 2. Bottom-canopy plants.

3. Understory-canopy plants. 4. Midwater and surface-canopy plants. Biology of Seaweeds Life cycle of typical kelp

In case of Macrocystis, the typical large plant seen is actually the asexual sporophyte generation (note that this is not the case for all algae) Typical alternation of generations Biology of Seaweeds Kelp Forests Ecosystems

Typical zonation and distribution of organisms in various California kelp forests

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