Marine algal flora of Santa Maria Island, Azores

Latest version published by Universidade dos Açores on Nov 15, 2020 Universidade dos Açores

Background The algal flora of the Island of Santa Maria (eastern group of the Azores archipelago) has attracted interest of many researchers on numerous past occasions (such as Drouët 1866; Agardh 1870; Trelease 1897; Schmidt 1931; Ardré et al. 1974; Fralick & Hehre 1990; Neto et al. 1991; Morton & Britton 2000; Amen et al. 2005; Wallenstein & Neto 2006; Tittley et al. 2009; Wallenstein et al. 2009a, 2010; Botelho et al. 2010; Torres et al. 2010; León-Cisneros et al. 2011; Martins et al. 2014; Micael et al. 2014; Rebelo et al. 2014; Ávila et al. 2015, 2016; Machín-Sánchez et al. 2016; Uchman et al. 2016; Johnson et al. 2017; Parente et al. 2018). Nevertheless, the Island macroalgal flora is not well-known as published information reflects limited collections obtained in short term visits by scientists. To overcome this, a thorough investigation, encompassing collections and presence data recording, was undertaken at both the littoral and sublittoral levels down to a depth of approximately 40 m, covering an area of approximately 64 km. The resultant taxonomic records are listed in the present paper which also provides information on species ecology and occurrence around the Island, improving, thereby, the knowledge of the Azorean macroalgal flora at both local and regional scales.

New information A total of 2329 specimens (including some taxa identified only to genus level) belonging to 261 taxa of macroalgae are registered, comprising 152 Rhodophyta, 43 Chlorophyta and 66 Ochrophyta (Phaeophyceae). Of these, 176 were identified to species level (103 Rhodophyta, 29 Chlorophyta and 44 Ochrophyta), encompassing 52 new records for the Island (30 Rhodophyta, 9 Chlorophyta and 13 Ochrophyta), 2 Macaronesian endemisms (Laurencia viridis Gil-Rodríguez & Haroun; and Millerella tinerfensis (Seoane-Camba) S.M.Boo & J.M.Rico), 11 introduced (the Rhodophyta Acrothamnion preissii (Sonder) E.M.Wollaston, Antithamnion hubbsii E.Y.Dawson, Asparagopsis armata Harvey, Asparagopsis armata Harvey phase Falkenbergia rufolanosa (Harvey) F.Schmitz, Bonnemaisonia hamifera Hariot, Melanothamnus harveyi (Bailey) Díaz-Tapia & Maggs, Scinaia acuta M.J.Wynne and Symphyocladia marchantioides (Harvey) Falkenberg; the Chlorophyta Codium fragile subsp. fragile (Suringar) Hariot; and the Ochrophyta Hydroclathrus tilesii (Endlicher) Santiañez & M.J.Wynne, and Papenfussiella kuromo (Yendo) Inagaki), and 19 species of uncertain status (11 Rhodophyta, 3 Chlorophyta and 5 Ochrophyta).

Introduction The marine algal flora of the isolated mid-Atlantic Azores archipelago is considered cosmopolitan, with species shared with Macaronesia, North Africa, the Mediterranean Sea, Atlantic Europe and America (Tittley 2003, Tittley & Neto 2006, Wallenstein et al. 2009b), and relatively rich when compared to that of other remote oceanic Islands (Neto et al. 2005, Tittley & Neto 2005, Wallenstein et al. 2009b). A recent publication by Freitas et al. (2019) list around 400 species of marine macroalgae to the Azores and, in a comparison with other mid-Atlantic archipelagos, reports that the Canary Islands, with 689 species, are by far the most diverse archipelago, followed by the Azores (405), Madeira (396), Cabo Verde (333) and the Selvagens (295 species). Those authors, based on extensive analysis encompassing data on coastal fishes, brachyurans, polychaetes, gastropods echinoderms and macroalgae, suggested that the Azores should be a biogeographical entity of its own and proposed a redefinition of the Lusitanian biogeographical province, in which they consider four ecoregions: the South European Atlantic Shelf, the Saharan Upwelling, the Azores ecoregion, and a new ecoregion they named Webbnesia, which comprises the archipelagos of Madeira, Selvagens and the Canary Islands. It is worth considering that the paper by Freitas et al. (2019) reflects data from only a few of the nine Islands, since not all of them have been thoroughly investigated. São Miguel, with a total number of algal species of 260 at the moment, is the Island with the largest amount of research dedicated to the subject. To overcome this, provide a better understanding of the archipelago’s seaweed flora, research has been conducted over the past three decades on all the Islands. Data on the Islands of Corvo and Flores, Graciosa, Pico, and Terceira is already available on the recently published papers by Neto et al. (2020 a, b, c, d). The present paper presents both physical and occurrence data, and information gathered from macroalgae surveys undertaken on Santa Maria Island mainly by the Island Aquatic Research Group of the Azorean Biodiversity Centre of the University of the Azores (Link: https://ce3c.ciencias.ulisboa.pt/sub-team/island-aquatic-ecology) the BIOISLE, Biodiversity and Islands Research Group of CIBIO-Açores at the University of the Azores (Link: https://cibio.up.pt/research-groups-1/details/bioisle), and the OKEANOS Centre of the University of the Azores (Link: http://www.okeanos.uac.pt). In these surveys particular attention was given to the small filamentous and thin sheet like forms that are often short-lived and fast-growing, and usually very difficult to identify in the wild, without the aid of a microscope and specialised literature in the laboratory. The paper aims to provide a valuable marine biological tool for research on systematics, diversity and conservation, biological monitoring, climate change and ecology for academics, students, government, private organizations and the general public.

Purpose: In this paper we present taxonomic records of macroalgae for Santa Maria and provide general information on their occurrence and distribution. By doing this, we are contributing to address several biodiversity shortfalls (see Cardoso et al. 2011, Hortal et al. 2015), namely the need to catalogue the Azorean macroalgae (Linnean shortfall) and improve the current information on their local and regional geographic distribution (Wallacean shortfall), as well as on species abundance and dynamics in space (Prestonian shortfall).

Data Records

The data in this sampling event resource has been published as a Darwin Core Archive (DwC-A), which is a standardized format for sharing biodiversity data as a set of one or more data tables. The core data table contains 139 records. 1 extension data tables also exist. An extension record supplies extra information about a core record. The number of records in each extension data table is illustrated below.

  • Event (core)
    139
  • Occurrence 
    2329

This IPT archives the data and thus serves as the data repository. The data and resource metadata are available for download in the downloads section. The versions table lists other versions of the resource that have been made publicly available and allows tracking changes made to the resource over time.

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How to cite

Researchers should cite this work as follows:

Neto A I, Parente M I, Cacabelos E, Costa A C, Botelho A, Ballesteros E, Monteiro S, Resendes R, Afonso P, Prestes A C L, Patarra R F, Álvaro N V, Milla-Figueras D, Neto R M A, Azevedo J M N, Moreu I (2020): Marine algal flora of Santa Maria Island, Azores. v1.1. Universidade dos Açores. Dataset/Samplingevent. http://ipt.gbif.pt/ipt/resource?r=santa_maria_macroalgal_flora&v=1.1

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This resource has been registered with GBIF, and assigned the following GBIF UUID: 38c70a82-c6e3-4ef4-89f4-a37455c6f73a.  Universidade dos Açores publishes this resource, and is itself registered in GBIF as a data publisher endorsed by GBIF Portugal.

Keywords

Macroalgae; Azores; Santa Maria Island; new records; endemism; native; uncertain; introduced; occurrence data; Samplingevent

Contacts

Who created the resource:

Ana Isabel Neto
Associate professor with aggregation
Universidade dos Açores, Faculdade de Ciências e Tecnologia, Departamento de Biologia and Grupo de Investigação Aquática Insular, IBBC-GBA/cE3c Rua da Mãe de Deus, 13-A 9500-321 Ponta Delgada São Miguel, Açores PT +351296650567
http://ce3c.ciencias.ulisboa.pt/member/anaisabelneto
Manuela I Parente
Researcher
CIBIO, Centro de Investigação em Biodiversidade e Recursos Genéticos, InBIO Laboratório Associado, Pólo dos Açores, Universidade dos Açores Rua da Mãe de Deus, 13-A 9500-321 Ponta Delgada São Miguel, Açores PT +351296650000
https://cibio.up.pt/people/details/macardoso
Eva Cacabelos
Postdoctoral fellow
MARE – Marine and Environmental Sciences Centre, Agência Regional para o Desenvolvimento da Investigação Tecnologia e Inovação (ARDITI) Edif. Madeira Tecnopolo, Piso 2, Caminho da Penteada 9020-105 Funchal Madeira PT +351910354122
https://www.mare-centre.pt/pt/user/7945
Ana Cristina Costa
Researcher
CIBIO, Centro de Investigação em Biodiversidade e Recursos Genéticos, InBIO Laboratório Associado, Pólo dos Açores, Universidade dos Açores Rua da Mãe de Deus, 13-A 9500-321 Ponta Delgada São Miguel, Açores +351296650000
https://cibio.up.pt/people/details/arcosta
Andrea Botelho
Researcher
CIBIO, Centro de Investigação em Biodiversidade e Recursos Genéticos, InBIO Laboratório Associado, Pólo dos Açores, Universidade dos Açores Rua da Mãe de Deus, 13-A 9500-321 Ponta Delgada São Miguel, Açores PT +351296650000
https://cibio.up.pt/people/details/azbotelho
Enric Ballesteros
Researcher
Centre d'Estudis Avançats de Blanes-CSIC Acc. Cala Sant Francesc 14 17320 Blanes Girona ES +34972336101
http://www.ceab.csic.es/es/persona/ballesteros-sagarra-kike/
Sandra Monteiro
Research Technician
CIBIO, Centro de Investigação em Biodiversidade e Recursos Genéticos, InBIO Laboratório Associado, Pólo dos Açores, Universidade dos Açores Rua da Mãe de Deus, 13-A 9500-321 Ponta Delgada São Miguel, Açores PT +351296650000
https://cibio.up.pt/people/details/smonteiro
Roberto Resendes
Curator at the AZB Herbarium Ruy Telles Palhinha
Universidade dos Açores, Faculdade de Ciências e Tecnologia, Departamento de Biologia Rua da Mãe de Deus, 13-A 9500-321 Ponta Delgada São Miguel, Açores PT +351296650000, ext. 1731
Pedro Afonso
Senior Researcher
IMAR/Okeanos – University of the Azores Departamento de Oceanografia e Pescas, Universidade dos Açores, Rua Prof. Doutor Frederico Machado 9901-862 Horta Faial, Açores PT
http://www.okeanos.uac.pt/equipa
Afonso C. L. Prestes
Researcher
Universidade dos Açores, Faculdade de Ciências e Tecnologia, Departamento de Biologia and Grupo de Investigação Aquática Insular, IBBC-GBA/cE3c Rua da Mãe de Deus, 13-A 9500-321 Ponta Delgada São Miguel, Açores PT +351296650567
https://ce3c.ciencias.ulisboa.pt/member/afonsoprestes
Rita F. Patarra
Project manager and Science Communicator
Expolab - Ciência Viva Science Centre Avenida da Ciência - Beta, n.º 8 9560-421 Lagoa São Miguel, Açores PT
https://ce3c.ciencias.ulisboa.pt/member/anaritapatarra
Nuno Vaz Álvaro
Researcher
Universidade dos Açores, Faculdade de Ciências Agrárias, CCMMG (Centro do Clima Meteorologia e Mudanças Globais), IITA-A (Instituto de Investigação e Tecnologias Agrárias e do Ambiente) Campus de Angra do Heroísmo Rua Capitão João d’Ávlia – Pico da Urze 9700-042 Angra do Heroísmo Terceira, Açores PT
http://cita.angra.uac.pt/clima/equipa/ver.php?id=245
David Milla-Figueras
Collaborator
IMAR/Okeanos – University of the Azores Departamento de Oceanografia e Pescas, Universidade dos Açores, Rua Prof. Doutor Frederico Machado 9901-862 Horta Faial, Açores PT
Raul M. A. Neto
Bachelor in Biology
José M. N. Azevedo
Auxiliary professor and Researcher
Universidade dos Açores, Faculdade de Ciências e Tecnologia, Departamento de Biologia and Grupo de Investigação Aquática Insular, IBBC-GBA/cE3c Rua da Mãe de Deus, 13-A 9500-321 Ponta Delgada São Miguel, Açores
https://ce3c.ciencias.ulisboa.pt/member/jose-manuel-viegas-de-oliveira-neto-azevedo
Ignacio Moreu
Researcher
Universidade dos Açores, Faculdade de Ciências e Tecnologia, Departamento de Biologia and Grupo de Investigação Aquática Insular, IBBC-GBA/cE3c Rua da Mãe de Deus, 13-A 9500-321 Ponta Delgada São Miguel, Açores PT
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Who can answer questions about the resource:

Ana Isabel Neto
Associate professor with aggregation
Universidade dos Açores, Faculdade de Ciências e Tecnologia, Departamento de Biologia and Grupo de Investigação Aquática Insular, IBBC-GBA/cE3c Rua da Mãe de Deus, 13-A 9500-321 Ponta Delgada São Miguel, Açores PT +351296650567
http://ce3c.ciencias.ulisboa.pt/member/anaisabelneto

Who filled in the metadata:

Ana Isabel Neto
Associate professor with aggregation
Universidade dos Açores, Faculdade de Ciências e Tecnologia, Departamento de Biologia and Grupo de Investigação Aquática Insular, IBBC-GBA/cE3c Rua da Mãe de Deus, 13-A 9500-321 Ponta Delgada São Miguel, Açores PT +351296650567
http://ce3c.ciencias.ulisboa.pt/member/anaisabelneto
Ignacio Moreu
Researcher
Universidade dos Açores, Faculdade de Ciências e Tecnologia, Departamento de Biologia and Grupo de Investigação Aquática Insular, IBBC-GBA/cE3c Rua da Mãe de Deus, 13-A 9500-321 Ponta Delgada São Miguel, Açores PT +351296650567
https://ce3c.ciencias.ulisboa.pt/member/Ignacio_Moreu_Badia
Manuela I. Parente
Researcher
CIBIO, Centro de Investigação em Biodiversidade e Recursos Genéticos, InBIO Laboratório Associado, Pólo dos Açores, Universidade dos Açores Rua da Mãe de Deus, 13-A 9500-321 Ponta Delgada São Miguel, Açores PT +351296650000
https://cibio.up.pt/people/details/macardoso

Who else was associated with the resource:

Author
Ana Isabel Neto
Associate professor with aggregation
Universidade dos Açores, Faculdade de Ciências e Tecnologia, Departamento de Biologia and Grupo de Investigação Aquática Insular, IBBC-GBA/cE3c Rua da Mãe de Deus, 13-A 9500-321 Ponta Delgada São Miguel, Açores PT +351296650567
http://ce3c.ciencias.ulisboa.pt/member/anaisabelneto
Author
Ignacio Moreu
Researcher
Universidade dos Açores, Faculdade de Ciências e Tecnologia, Departamento de Biologia and Grupo de Investigação Aquática Insular, IBBC-GBA/cE3c Rua da Mãe de Deus, 13-A 9500-321 Ponta Delgada São Miguel, Açores PT +351296650567
https://ce3c.ciencias.ulisboa.pt/member/Ignacio_Moreu_Badia
Author
Manuela I. Parente
Researcher
CIBIO, Centro de Investigação em Biodiversidade e Recursos Genéticos, InBIO Laboratório Associado, Pólo dos Açores, Universidade dos Açores Rua da Mãe de Deus, 13-A 9500-321 Ponta Delgada São Miguel, Açores PT +351296650000
https://cibio.up.pt/people/details/macardoso

Geographic Coverage

Santa Maria Island Description: Azores, Portugal (approximately 37°1'19''N, -25°11'24''W); Coordinates: 37.022 N and 36.918 S Latitude; -25.190 W and -25.009 E Longitude

Bounding Coordinates South West [36.92, -25.19], North East [37.021, -25.009]

Taxonomic Coverage

All macroalgae were identified to genus or species level. In total, 261 taxa were identified belonging to 28 orders and 60 families, distributed by the phyla Rhodophyta (14 orders and 34 families), Chlorophyta (5 orders and 9 families), and Ochrophyta (9 orders and 17 families).

Phylum  Rhodophyta (Red algae),  Chlorophyta (Green algae),  Ochrophyta (Brown algae)

Temporal Coverage

Living Time Period 1989 - 2019

Project Data

Aimed at improving the knowledge of the macroalgae flora of the eastern islands of the Azores archipelago, extensive observations were made in the period between 1989 and 2019, encompassing both collections and presence data recordings, and covering the littoral and sublittoral levels down to approximately 40 m around the islands. This paper lists the taxonomic records and provides information on each species’ ecology and occurrence in the islands’ littoral.

Title Marine algal flora of Santa Maria Island, Azores
Identifier Macroalgal flora of Santa Maria Island (Azores)
Funding This study was mainly financed by the following projects/scientific expeditions: • Projects: o CAJFQ – “Characterization of the algal component of quaternary fossil deposits”, integrated in the project “Macaronésia 2000”, funded by the Autonomous Organism of Museums and Centers of Tenerife, Canary Islands (1999-2004); o PARQMAR – “Characterization, Planning and Management of Marine Protected Areas in Macaronesia - The cases of the Eco-Marine Park of Funchal (Madeira), Gran Canaria and Tenerife (Canary Islands) and Santa Maria (Azores)”, funded by INTERREG III B 2000 Community Initiative Program -2006, Azores-Madeira-Canary Islands. 03/ MAC/ 4.2/ M9 (2004-2006); o RRASMA – “Removal of abandoned fishing nets off the island of Santa Maria”, funded by the Regional Government of the Azores, Environment Delegation of Santa Maria Island (2005-2007); o RCGO - “Coastal Waste of the Eastern Group (São Miguel and Santa Maria Islands; Formigas Islets): inventory, catalog, raise awareness”, funded by QUERCUS (2006); o CAMAG/ORI – “Characterization of coastal water bodies on the islands of Santa Maria and São Miguel”, funded by the Regional Government of the Azores, Regional Secretariat for the Environment and the Sea, Regional Directorate for Planning and Water Resources (2008-2012); o LAUMACAT - “Diversity and phylogenetic relationships on the benthic marine algae with pharmacological potential: the Laurencia complex (Rhodophyta) in Macaronesian archipelagos, tropical and subtropical Atlantic”, funded by the Ministerio de Ciencia e Innovación, Dirección General de Investigación y Gestión del Plan Nacional de R+D+i, Subdirección General de Proyectos de Investigación, Gobierno de España (2010 to 2013) and by the São Paulo State Research Support Foundation (FAPESP), Brazil, Proc. 2014 / 00012-1 (2013 a 2016); o ASMAS - Açores: Stop-over for Marine Alien Species?” Government of the Azores - Regional Secretariat for the Sea, Science and Technology (M2.1.2/I/032/2011). 2012 – 2016; o PIMA – “Elaboration of the implementation program of the Marine Strategy Framework Directive - Marine Invasion Program in the Azores” (3/DRAM /2015). Government of the Azores - Regional Secretariat for the Sea, Science and Technology, Regional Directorate for Sea Affairs (GRA /SRMCT-DRAM), 2015; o BALA – “Elaboration of the implementation program of the marine strategy framework directive - biodiversity of the coastal environments of the Azores” (2 /DRAM /2015). Government of the Azores - Regional Secretariat for the Sea, Science and Technology, Regional Directorate for Sea Affairs (GRA /SRMCT-DRAM), 2015; o “ACORES-01-0145-FEDER-000072 - AZORES BIOPORTAL – PORBIOTA. Operational Programme Azores 2020 (85% ERDF and 15% regional funds); • Scientific Expeditions and campaigns: o “SANTA MARIA E FORMIGAS/90”, organized by the Biology Department of the University of the Azores, Santa Maria Island, Azores, June 1990; o “Fossil deposits of Prainha and Lagoinhas” under the project CAJFQ- Macaronésia 2001 o “Santa Maria 2002”, under the workshop "Marine Fossils of the Azores: Perspectives for the future", 2002; o “Santa Maria 2005”, under the project PARQMAR, 2005; o “Santa Maria Island (Azores) 2009”, organized by the Biology Department of the University of the Azores 2009; o “Laurencia/2011”, under the project LAUMACAT, 2011; o “Waitt Foundation”, under the projects BALA and PIMA, 2016; o “BALA/PIMA”, under the projects BALA and PIMA, 2018; o “PORBIOTA/2019” under the project ACORES-01-0145-FEDER-000072 - AZORES BIOPORTAL – PORBIOTA, 2019; • Other funds: o Portuguese National Funds, through FCT – Fundação para a Ciência e a Tecnologia, within the projects UID/BIA/00329/2013, 2015-2019, UID/BIA/00329/2020-2023 and UID/BIA/50027/2019, UID/BIA/50027/2013-2020 and POCI-01-0145-FEDER-006821; o ERDF funds through the Operational Programme for Competitiveness Factors – COMPETE; o Portuguese Regional Funds, through DRCT - Regional Directorate for Science and Technology, within several projects, 2019 and 2020 and SRMCT /DRAM - Regional Secretariat for the Sea, Science and Technology, Regional Directorate for Sea Affairs; o CIRN/DB/UAc (Research Centre for Natural Resources, Universidade dos Açores, Departamento de Biologia); o CIIMAR (Interdisciplinary Centre of Marine and Environmental Research, Porto, Portugal).
Study Area Description Isolated in the mid-Atlantic Ocean and emerging from the Azores Plateau and located above an active triple junction between three of the world's large tectonic plates (the North American Plate, the Eurasian Plate and the African Plate, Hildenbrand et al. 2014), the Azores archipelago (38°43′49″N, 27°19′10″W) comprises comprising nine Islands and several islets spread over 500 km, in a WNW direction. The Island of Santa Maria, with approximately 97 km², is the easternmost one of the archipelago (37°1'1''N, 25°11'6''W), located at approximately 430 km east of the Mid-Atlantic Ridge within the boundary that divides the Eurasian and African Plates (Hildenbrand et al. 2014). There are no indications of recent volcanism and the last eruptions occurred during the Upper Pliocene. It is the only Island of the archipelago where marine fossiliferous deposits are known, which have been studied since the 19th century (see, for example, Amen et al. 2005; Neto et al. 2008b; Rebelo et al. 2014; Ávila et al. 2015, 2016; Uchman et al. 2016). The Island exhibits two distinct morphological areas: a flatten western part with extensive wave-cut platforms reaching altitudes of 250 m above sea level, and a more irregular eastern part, with the highest point over 450 m (Neto et al. 2008b). The climate is characterized by regular rainfall, medium levels of relative humidity and persistent winds, mainly during the winter and autumn seasons (Morton et al. 1998). Fog can occur at the higher elevations. As in the remaining Azorean Islands, the tidal range is small (<2 m, see Instituto Hidrográfico 1981), the coastal extension is restricted, with deep waters occurring within a few kilometres offshore, and coasts are subjected to swell and surge most of the year. The Islands’ coastline is approximately 63 km long and the coastal typology results from the effect of the maritime agitation, responsible for the predominance of erosive morphologies and from the Islands’ antiquity and the fact that it has been frequently submerged. As a consequence, several agglomerations of marine sedimentary rocks occur (e.g. marine conglomerates, fossiliferous calcarenites and arenites) distributed through cliffs and headlands, providing a special geological value to this island that is not present elsewhere in the archipelago (Neto et al. 2008b). The north and east coasts are characterized by discontinuous and mixed geological forms, with abrupt headlands between which lengths of large boulder and cobbles occur. At São Lourenço high cliffs give rise to narrow high-tide platforms, and low headlands generally less than 10m high, that allow the establishment of cobble beaches and marine deposition that creates the local sandy beach. The northwest coastline of the Island is characterized by the occurrence of marine deposition and agglomerations of small cobbles, while the northeast coast is sculpted by plunging cliffs. Boulders and cobbles are commonly present. The west and south coasts of the Island present a geological typology with predominantly steep slopes, characterized by the occurrence of plunging cliffs that vary in height, abrupt headland segments and occasional high-tide platforms covered by boulders and cobbles. Praia Formosa has a different configuration with a smooth typology that facilitates seasonal marine deposition processes that alternate between a sandy beach in summer and a cobble beach during the rest of the year (Neto et al. 2008b). Along the coastline of the Island, the bottom is dominated by irregular rocky beds, with compact bedrock dominating over boulder and cobble ones. Only two sand basins occur, Praia Formosa (south coast) and São Lourenço on the east coast (Neto et al. 2008b). On both beaches bedrock patches emerge from the sediment bed. This mixed substrate is common to several other places around Santa Maria, at variable depths down to 30 m (e.g. Baía do Salto de Cães and Ilhéu das Lagoinhas on the north coast, Baía do Aveiro and Baía da Maia on the east coast). Shore slope and topography show substantial variation along the shoreline. Western and northern shores are usually flatter, with depths of 30 m occurring about 500 m offshore. Eastern shores are steeper: depths of 30 m can be reached less than 200 m away from the coast. Southern shores are intermediate in this respect. The area that comprises the Praia Formosa presents a slope that is similar to that of the north side of the Island, while the area between Ponta da Malbusca and Ponta do Castelo is steeper. Submerged or semi-submerged caves, arches and tunnels of small amplitude and reduced length are common. As depth increases, the slope decreases, although the bottom is still rocky and uneven. The sediment floor covering the deepest areas is stable, generally composed of medium and /or coarse sand (Neto et al. 2008c). Along the coastline, natural sheltered habitats (arches and semi-submerged caves, tide pools) create favourable conditions for the growth and the occurrence of a considerable diversity and abundance of macroinvertebrates (Neto et al. 2008a, c) and pelagic and benthic coastal fish (Azevedo et al. 2008). As on the other islands of the archipelago, intertidal communities of Santa Maria Island are primarily dominated by algal vegetation, which exhibits a distribution pattern in mosaic and /or bands, with a predominance of algal turfs, covering the rocks as a carpet (Neto et al. 2008b). This turf growing form is a taxonomically complex mixture of small algae and developmental forms of large algae, in which the thalli intertwine and reattach to one another and are adapted for vegetative spread using such multiple attachments to the substratum and adjacent thalli for anchorage (Wallenstein et al. 2009a). The compact mat retains water and provides a suitable habitat for admixed algae and other organisms. A very distinct horizontal pattern of species occurrence characterises the Azorean intertidal shores. In Santa Maria Island three major zones are commonly found (Neto et al. 2008b): the uppermost is dominated by littorinids; the mid-level zone is characterised by chthamalid barnacles, sometimes limpets and dominated by algal turf; and the lowest zone, representing the transition to the sublittoral fringe, is characterized by various species of frondose algae growing in bands (e.g. the Macaronesian endemism Laurencia viridis), as epiphytes or forming patches among and over turf species (e.g. Ellisolandia elongata (J.Ellis & Solander) K.R.Hind & G.W.Saunders). The mid-shore level zone on bedrock or boulder shores sometimes exhibits patches of the brown alga Fucus spiralis Linnaeus and the red agarophyte Gelidium microdon Kützing, and/or the occasional occurrence of the red algae Porphyra/ Pyropia and/ or Nemalion elminthoides (Velley) Batters, this later commonly growing in patches with the brown crust Nemoderma tingitanum Schousboe ex Bornet. In Spring and Summer, considerable amounts of the introduced red alga Asparagopsis armata Harvey can be seen at the lower intertidal level. Important features and habitats at the shore level are rock pools, occurring in different shapes and sizes and often recreating a shallow subtidal habitat which contain a rich diversity of marine life (Neto et al. 2008a). There is a gradient in the proportion of different algal groups in pools at different shore levels. Green algae dominate upper shore while red and brown algae dominate rock pools lower on the shore. Similarly, faunal diversity in rock pools is greater at lower intertidal levels. Species diversity and richness are lower in upper shore rock-pools where climatic conditions are more stressful (Neto et al. 2008a). The rocky bottoms in the submerged zone are covered by more frondose macrophytes (Neto et al. 2008c) such as the brown algae Dictyota spp., Halopteris filicina (Grateloup) Kützing, Halopteris scoparia (Linnaeus) Sauvageau, and Zonaria tournefortii (J. V. Lamouroux) Montagne; and the red species Plocamium cartilagineum (Linnaeus) P.S.Dixon and Sphaerococcus coronopifolius Stackhouse. The brown species Padina pavonica (Linnaeus) Thivy can be locally common. At this level, the edible barnacles Megabalanus azoricus (Pilsbry, 1916) and/or the limpets Patella aspera Röding, 1798 are concentrated in the first meters. Other conspicuous invertebrates are the octopus Octopus vulgaris Cuvier, 1797, the fan worm Sabella spallanzanii (Gmelin, 1791), the sea urchins Sphaerechinus granularis (Lamarck, 1816) and Arbacia lixula (Linnaeus, 1758), and the sea stars Marthasterias glacialis (Linnaeus, 1758) and Ophidiaster ophidianus (Lamarck, 1816) (Neto et al. 2008c). Frequent fish species at this level are the blue wrasse Symphodus caeruleus (Azevedo, 1999) or the ornate wrasse Thalassoma pavo (Linnaeus, 1758) in shallow rocky areas, the morays, Muraena helena Linnaeus, 1758, or the forkbeards Phycis phycis (Linnaeus, 1766) mainly in crevices during the day. The parrotfish Sparisoma cretense (Linnaeus, 1758), the salemas Sarpa salpa (Linnaeus, 1758) and the white sea bream Diplodus sargus (Linnaeus, 1758) roam among rocky reefs (Azevedo et al. 2008).
Design Description The sampling referred to in this paper was performed across littoral and sublittoral levels down to approximately 40 m on the Island of Santa Maria. Each sampling location was visited several times and on each occasion a careful and extensive survey was undertaken to provide a good coverage of the area. Both physical collections and presence recording were made by walking over the intertidal shores during low tides or by SCUBA diving. The specimens collected were taken to the laboratory for identification and preservation and the resulting vouchers were deposited at the AZB Herbarium Ruy Telles Palhinha and the LSM- Molecular Systematics Laboratory at the Faculty of Sciences and Technology of the University of the Azores.

The personnel involved in the project:

Content Provider
Abel Sentiés
Content Provider
Afonso C. L. Prestes
Content Provider
Ana C. Costa
Content Provider
André Amaral
Content Provider
Andrea Cunha
Content Provider
Andrea Z. Botelho
Content Provider
Camille Fontaine
Content Provider
Catarina Santos
Content Provider
Cláudia Lopes
Content Provider
Daniela Gabriel
Content Provider
David Milla-Figueras
Content Provider
Dinis Geraldes
Content Provider
Edgar Rosas-Alquicira
Content Provider
Edward Hehre
Content Provider
Emanuel Xavier
Content Provider
Enric Ballesteros
Content Provider
Eunice Nogueira
Content Provider
Eva Cacabelos
Content Provider
Francisco Wallenstein
Content Provider
Heather Baldwin
Content Provider
Joana Michael
Content Provider
Joana Pombo
Content Provider
João Brum
Content Provider
João Ferreira
Content Provider
João Monteiro
Content Provider
José Baptista
Content Provider
José M. N. Azevedo
Content Provider
Linda Beiroldi
Content Provider
Luís Resendes
Content Provider
Marco Enoch
Content Provider
Manuela I. Parente
Content Provider
Maria Machín-Sánchez
Content Provider
Marlene Terra
Content Provider
Mutue Toyota Fujii
Content Provider
Maria Ana Dionísio
Content Provider
Nuno Vaz Álvaro
Content Provider
Patrícia Madeira
Content Provider
Paulo Torres
Content Provider
Pedro Monteiro
Content Provider
Raquel Torres
Content Provider
Ricardo Cordeiro
Content Provider
Richard Fralick
Content Provider
Rita F. Patarra
Content Provider
Ruben Couto
Content Provider
Rui Sousa
Content Provider
Sandra Monteiro
Content Provider
Sérgio Ávila
Content Provider
Tarso Costa
Content Provider
Tito Silva
Content Provider
Valeria Cassano
Content Provider
Viegas Pinto
Content Provider
Maria Manuel

Sampling Methods

Sampling involved specimen collecting and species presence recording. For the former, at each location samples were obtained by scraping and/ or manually collecting one or two specimens of all different species found into labelled bags. Species recording data was gathered by registering all species present in the sampled locations visited. Intertidal collections were made during low tide by walking over the shores. Subtidal collections were made by SCUBA diving around the area.

Study Extent The present paper includes sampling performed on a relatively large area, of approximately 64 km, covering littoral and sublittoral levels down to approximately 40 m around the Island.
Quality Control Each sampled taxon was identified by trained taxonomists and involved morphological and anatomical observations of whole specimens by eye, and/or of histological preparations under microscopes to determine the main diagnostic features of each species as described in the literature.

Method step description:

  1. At the laboratory standard procedures were followed in specimens sorting and macroalgae identification. A combination of morphological and anatomical characters and reproductive structures was used for species identification. For small and simple thalli, this required the observation of the entire thallus with the naked eye and/or using dissecting and compound microscopes. For larger and more complex algae, investigation of the thallus anatomy required histological preparations (longitudinal and transverse sections) or squashed preparations of mucilaginous thalli, sometimes after staining, to observe vegetative and reproductive structures and other diagnostic features. The Azorean algal flora has components from several geographical regions which causes difficulties in species identification. Floras and keys for the North Atlantic, Tropical Atlantic and Western Mediterranean were used (e.g. Schmidt 1931, Taylor 1967, 1978, Levring 1974, Dixon & Irvine 1977, Lawson & John 1982, Irvine 1983, Gayral & Cosson 1986, Fletcher 1987, Afonso-Carrillo & Sansón 1989, Burrows 1991, Boudouresque et al. 1992, Cabioc'h et al. 1992, Maggs & Hommersand 1993, Irvine & Chamberlain 1994, Brodie et al. 2007, Lloréns et al. 2012 and Rodríguez-Prieto et al. 2013). For more critical and taxonomically difficult taxa, specimens were taken to the Natural History Museum (London) for comparison with collections there. A reference collection was made for all collected specimens by assigning them an herbarium code number and depositing them at the AZB Herbarium Ruy Telles Palhinha and the LSM- Molecular Systematics Laboratory, University of Azores. Depending on the species and on planned further research, different types of collections were made, namely (i) wet collections using 5% buffered formaldehyde seawater and then replacing it by the fixing agent Kew (Bridsen & Forman 1999); (ii) dried collections, either by pressing the algae (most species) as described by Gayral and Cosson (1986), or by letting them air dry (calcareous species); and (iii) silica gel collections for molecular study. Nomenclatural and taxonomic status used here follow Algaebase (Guiry & Guiry, 2020). The database was organized on FileMaker Pro.

Collection Data

Collection Name AZB | Marine macroalgae collection of Santa Maria Island (Azores)-Expedition Santa Maria and Formigas/90
Collection Identifier 81c64926-4d75-429d-b21f-f7cd93e30504
Parent Collection Identifier AZB Herbarium Ruy Telles Palhinha, Faculty of Sciences and Technology of the University of the Azores
Collection Name AZB | Marine macroalgae collection of Santa Maria Island (Azores)-Project LAUMACAT
Collection Identifier 100ab0f2-7f8b-4eb6-a5f5-6257d32003a5
Parent Collection Identifier AZB Herbarium Ruy Telles Palhinha, Faculty of Sciences and Technology of the University of the Azores
Collection Name AZB | Marine macroalgae collection of Santa Maria Island (Azores)-Project PARQMAR
Collection Identifier af962795-47c6-4219-a295-6687a94afeda
Parent Collection Identifier AZB Herbarium Ruy Telles Palhinha, Faculty of Sciences and Technology of the University of the Azores
Collection Name AZB | Marine macroalgae collection of Santa Maria Island (Azores)-Occasional sampling
Collection Identifier 08883948-f896-495f-ab3d-9fe49f23b76c
Parent Collection Identifier AZB Herbarium Ruy Telles Palhinha, Faculty of Sciences and Technology of the University of the Azores
Collection Name LSM | Marine macroalgae collection of Santa Maria Island (Azores)-Department of Biology Expedition 2009
Collection Identifier 865b91e9-1ec6-4bb8-a941-aba2b586071a
Parent Collection Identifier LSM- Molecular Systematics Laboratory, Faculty of Sciences and Technology of the University of the Azores
Collection Name LSM | Marine macroalgae collection of Santa Maria Island (Azores)-Project ASMAS
Collection Identifier 4efe744e-1e38-431c-b112-7fb9f9bf279a
Parent Collection Identifier LSM- Molecular Systematics Laboratory, Faculty of Sciences and Technology of the University of the Azores
Collection Name Marine macroalgae occurrence of Santa Maria Island (Azores)-Campaign CAMAG-ORI-SMA/2008
Collection Identifier 6606098f-5fbb-4731-9cfa-b7c8e78c3638
Parent Collection Identifier Not applicable
Collection Name Marine macroalgae occurrence of Santa Maria Island (Azores)-Project LAUMACAT
Collection Identifier bae7fc8f-6333-43d4-887b-3e65617df133
Parent Collection Identifier Not applicable
Collection Name Marine macroalgae occurrence of Santa Maria Island (Azores)-Occasional sampling
Collection Identifier 579bc266-7779-49ea-a775-f44abc2bdad3
Parent Collection Identifier Not applicable
Collection Name Marine macroalgae occurrence of Santa Maria Island (Azores)-Campaign Waitt Foundation - BALA /PIMA /2016
Collection Identifier 30ed893c-b66d-4c85-8848-10f144a6f957
Parent Collection Identifier Not applicable
Collection Name Marine macroalgae occurrence of Santa Maria Island (Azores)-PIMA / 2016
Collection Identifier 852eacdf-977e-44dd-9a52-172a5082a6dd
Parent Collection Identifier Not applicable
Collection Name Marine macroalgae occurrence of Santa Maria Island (Azores)-Campaign BALA /PIMA /2018
Collection Identifier 22941d45-0678-49fb-bdfe-8b0052ceb298
Parent Collection Identifier Not applicable
Collection Name Marine macroalgae occurrence of Santa Maria Island (Azores)-Campaign Porbiota/ 2019
Collection Identifier 93e46396-33b2-4dff-b3d1-acff7e76753c
Parent Collection Identifier Not applicable
Collection Name LSM | Marine macroalgae collection of Santa Maria Island (Azores)-Occasional sampling
Collection Identifier 77a28947-47d8-420f-b40d-f49e87556090
Parent Collection Identifier Not applicable
Collection Name Marine macroalgae occurrence of Santa Maria Island (Azores)-PIMA / 2017
Collection Identifier b74c3414-e277-4789-8806-27a9abf0f7ee
Parent Collection Identifier Not applicable
Specimen preservation methods Dried and pressed,  Dried,  Formalin,  Other

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Alternative Identifiers http://ipt.gbif.pt/ipt/resource?r=santa_maria_macroalgal_flora