Algal research

Museum staff are actively engaged in a variety of research relating to algae, making use of the collections and wealth of expertise housed within the Museum.

The research programme is based around the hypothesis that modern distributions of seaweeds in the North Atlantic reflect their origins and patterns of dispersal.

The programme has two strands:

  1. A detailed study of two of the largest orders of red algae, the Bangiales and the Corallinales.
  2. Mapping and recording seaweed biodiversity in the North Atlantic and especially around UK coasts.
  • Porphyra birdiae, a red alga
    Red algal systematics

    Museum researchers are conducting a number of systematic projects on red algae, focusing on the Bangiales and Corallinales. Both are common throughout the North Atlantic and taxonomically highly problematic.

  • Rockpools in Pembrokeshire, Wales
    Mapping the UK seaweed flora

    The Museum's algal herbarium is a rich resource of UK algae specimens. Find out more about our mapping project, including how we are developing the spatial and temporal data for a variety of algae conservation purposes.

  • Seaweeds at Bossington, Somerset in the UK
    Somerset seaweeds

    The work to provide a specimen-based record of seaweeds in Somerset, UK, has revealed that the Severn Estuary and Bristol Channel area have a huge macroalgal biodiversity and uncovered species previously unknown in the area.

  • Seaweed
    Global Seaweed Network

    The network is developing a programme to enhance and develop the global seaweed community into an internationally recognized and respected scientific body. Find out more about the current strategy of the Global Seaweed Network.

  • Spirogyra, a green alga
    Staff studying algae

    Find out who is currently involved in algal-related research at the Museum.