The nature of the epiphytism of red algae and also the occurrence and possible role of other epiphytic micro-organisms within the superficial tissues of pneumatophores of Avicennia marina (Forssk.) Vierh. were investigated. Transmission electron microscopy (TEM) studies revealed that bacteria and holdfasts of red algae were present in damaged tissue of the periderm. Culture studies indicated that some bacteria were diazotrophic. A mutualistic relationship between epiphytes and mangrove pneumatophores was postulated.
Keywords: Algae, bacteria, epiphytism, mangrove, Avicennia marina.
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