Alternate Title

Sequencing of the rbcL Marker Reveals the Nonnative Red Alga Grateloupia taiwanensis (Halymeniaceae, Rhodophyta) in Alabama


Mobile Bay, AL has been the site for the introduction of several terrestrial and freshwater invasive species, including red imported fire ants (Solenopsis invicta) and spike-topped apple snails (Pomacea bridgesii). The Gulf of Mexico has also been invaded by several marine animal species, such as zebra mussels (Dreissena polymorpha). To date, no invasive marine macroalga has been reported in the Mobile Bay area. However, recent collections of an unusual species of Grateloupia (Halymeniaceae, Rhodophyta) in Alabama indicate that an introduction has been made. On the basis of phylogenetic analysis of the large subunit of ribulose-1,5- bisphosphate carboxylase/oxygenase (rbcL) marker, the species has been identified as Grateloupia taiwanensis S.M. Lin & H.Y. Liang. This is the first report of G. taiwanensis outside its native range.