We have recently databased and imaged selected genera of British Algae held in the herbarium as part of a project run by the Natural History Museum, London. The aim of this project is to gather data of interest to biodiversity and conservation research including non-native seaweeds, species of conservation concern and species which may be potential indicators of environmental change.

You can read more about the project on its website

During this process we came across some interestingly mounted and beautiful specimens, a selection of these are shown below:

Drachiella spectabilisDrachiella spectabilis certainly deserves the epithet spectabilis! It has kept a wonderful hot pink colour since it was collected in 1978









Himanthalia elongataThis button is the hold fast of Himanthalia elongata








Chorda filum How do you mount a specimen of Chorda filum that is a couple of metres long?










Phymatolithon calcareumPhymatolithon calcareum is a coralline red alga, stored in boxes, mounted on specimen sheets.










Alaria esculentaThis specimen of Alaria esculenta is a larger seaweed, and has had to be curved to fit the space on the sheet.










Chorda tomentosaThis ‘furry worm’ is Chorda tomentosa










Padina pavonicaThis species, Padina pavonica is known as Peacocks tail, the resemblance can still be seen in the dried specimens










Sphaerococcus coronopifoliusSphaerococcus coronopifolius has a lovely branching form, as well keeping its red and pink colour since it was collected in 1829





Post written by Becky Camfield