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Re: [APD] RE: Algae spores
At 07:23 AM 12/15/2004 -0800, you wrote:
>I wanted to correct a couple points you made about spores and taxonomy.
Red algae are not bacteria, they are protists (although protists are really
a garbage bag of everything that isn't a plant, fungus, animal or bacterium)
and are actually the closest living relatives to the green algae and land
>Plants form spores all the time, its critical to how they reproduce
sexually. Actually you are closer to correct if you refer to green algae
only and not include the land plants, but I'm sure that at least some green
algae make spores. Assuming you mean airborn spores you may well be correct
about the filamentous algae in our tanks, but I'm not a phycologist so I
won't say much there.
>In terms of "land plants" (bryophytes and vascular plants), every single
plant species today makes spores (except for those that are 100% asexual),
although I wouldn't fault anyone for saying flowering plants and gymnosperms
don't (its highly cryptic). Ferns however make tons of spores under their
leaves that float off in the wind to colonize new habitat and allow for
sexual reproduction. Seeds are spore-like in being able to disseminate
great distances and often survive conditions that would kill the parent
plant (e.g. cold and drought).
>Some plants can dry out just fine. Spanish moss (a common bromeliad in the
SE US) and resurrection fern (Polypodium polypodioides, common throughout
the eastern US and probably up into Canada) can dry to a crisp and come the
next rain those dried out leaves will spring back to life. I'm pretty
certain some green algae can do the same (probably not the one in question
>Anyway, this isn't meant to criticize you at all. Just to point out that
life is incredibly diverse and virtually no blanket rule can ever used to
describe a major lineage of organisms without exceptions happily thumbing
their noses at it.
>I can't believe I had so much to say about three short sentences! But I'm
a botanist, so it is easy for me to ramble on about plants!
If I could find my college non-vascular plants test I could probbaly rattle off
the alga that make spores and ones that don't.
I refer to red algae (staghorn, hell, bba) as bacteria because they're
a sort of werid genetic mixup of bacteria and plants.
My spanish moss never came back after being dried out, neither did any
of my other Bromeliads :-)
I havnt't been able to successfully un-dessicate green thread or staghorn
algae once it's dried. Perhaps it needs to undego some stimulus to make them
produce spores but the algal mass itself seems to be killed by drying.
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