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    Received 1 November 2007. Accepted 28 January 2009.

  • The first two authors contributed equally to this manuscript and are listed in alphabetical order.


Recent molecular and morphological data necessitate a major taxonomic revision of the Batrachospermales, an order of red algae, distributed in freshwater habitats throughout the world. This article is a synthesis of available information with some targeted additional sequence data, resulting in a few relatively conservative taxonomic changes to begin the process of creating a natural taxonomy for the Batrachospermales. To increase the information content of our taxonomic categories, and in particular to reduce paraphyly, we describe one new genus (Kumanoa) and a new section in Batrachospermum (section Macrospora), and we amend the circumscriptions of the family Batrachospermaceae (to include Lemaneaceae and Psilosiphonaceae), the genus Batrachospermum (to exclude the sections Contorta and Hybrida, raised to genus level as Kumanoa), and the sections Aristata, Helminthoidea, and Batrachospermum of Batrachospermum. We also provide a new name, B. montagnei, for the illegitimate B. guyanense, and recognize an informal paraphyletic grouping of taxa within Batrachospermum, the “Australasica Group.” This taxonomic synthesis increases the level of monophyly within the Batrachospermales but minimizes taxonomic change where data are still inadequate.