The Secret Life of Seaweeds


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Visitor article written and pictures offered by Joanna Sensible.

We’ve all been there. On the seashore, swimming within the water and letting out a pant of horror once we really feel a slimy, slippery object brush our legs. Present in most temperate coastal environments, seaweed dominates our cooler ocean habitats. But, when in comparison with its extra glamorous counterpart, coral, perplexing little is understood concerning the seaweeds and their position within the surroundings. Subsequent time you’re on a dive, cease for a second and look intently on the seaweed. Their secret lives are fascinating to review, with new discoveries being made virtually each day.

Joanna Smart - Underwater - Seaweed - Tasmania - Australia

Seaweeds aren’t Crops

Apparently, Seaweeds aren’t truly crops, they're a kind of algae. In contrast to land crops, seaweeds don’t have roots, leaves, trunks or vascular techniques. As an alternative, seaweeds derive vitamins immediately from the seawater round them. Many species are even comprised of equivalent cells all through the entire organism. Notably, they will vary in measurement from microscopic, to greater than 50 meter/164 ft tall. Some species are even calcareous, forming a tough crust on rocks

They're Extremely Numerous

Greater than 12,000 species of seaweeds are usually divided into three totally different courses, brown algae (Phaeophyceae), pink algae (Rhodophyta) and inexperienced algae (Chlorophyta). Nevertheless, though all of them develop in comparatively comparable circumstances, these courses aren’t truly that intently associated. Brown algae belong to a special organic kingdom than inexperienced algae and in evolutionary phrases, are much less intently associated than a starfish is to a blue whale.

Joanna Smart - Underwater - Seaweed - Tasmania - Australia

Their copy could be very difficult

Seaweeds have very complicated life histories that may differ between species. Typically, seaweeds have an asexual stage, generally known as a sporophyte. Sporophytes type giant bladed organisms which cowl the seabed and are mostly seen by divers. Different levels of seaweed copy are largely microscopic and may contain free swimming organisms which might be male or feminine. Apparently, purple seaweeds are the one group of organisms on earth which have three distinct life historical past levels. Some seaweeds may even produce intercourse pheromones to draw males.

Joanna Smart - Underwater - Seaweed - Tasmania - Australia

They make the world’s strongest glue

When you’ve ever watched giant waves batter the shoreline, you’ll discover that regardless of all of the forces of nature being thrown at them, many seaweeds can stay anchored to the rocks. Analysis is presently being undertaken to find out the chemical composition of the pure glue that seaweeds secrete to connect to rocks, which can be helpful for human purposes.

There’s in all probability some in your home proper now

Merchandise derived from seaweeds are generally utilized in a variety of on a regular basis family merchandise. Alginates, carrageenan and agar extracted from seaweed might be discovered in lots of processed meals, prescription drugs and cosmetics. Toothpaste, beer, ice-cream, firefighting foam, shampoo and yoghurt can all include seaweed merchandise. So subsequent time you’re having a snack, examine the components label for any seaweed!

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