Special issue for the journal Aquatic Botany on the Biology and ecology of pelagic and benthic Sargassum species

There are >300 species of Sargassum; however, only two species are holopelagic (S. fluitans and S. natans), which occur in the tropical and subtropical Atlantic, and have been concentrated in the iconic and biodiverse Sargasso Sea. Since 2011, new concentrations of large masses of these holopelagic species have been recorded intermittingly from Africa to Brazil, throughout the Caribbean and the Gulf of Mexico, which have now been classified as the greatest macroalgal bloom ever recorded.  These recurrent blooms have made the study of the holopelagic Sargassum species more relevant than ever before.

The recent massive invasion of pelagic Sargassum, has created havoc to ecosystems and economies throughout Africa and the Greater Caribbean; and if no proper management actions are undertaken, recurrent beaching of massive quantities of algal biomass on usually pristine beaches will induce a phase shift in the ecosystems and livelihoods of the coastal communities throughout the Greater Caribbean Sea and the African Gulf of Guinea.  In other parts of the world, benthic Sargassum species have also proliferated creating local ecological disequilibria.

In this Special Virtual Issue (SVI), we accept manuscripts on biology, taxonomy, ecophysiology, compounds, ecotoxicology and ecology of all Sargassum species, in the hope that through a better understanding of these algae and their interactions with the environment, we obtain insight into the origin, impacts on the ecosystems and drivers of the recent proliferations of these brown algae throughout the globe and in the tropical Atlantic in particular.

Guest editors:

Liga Collado Vides, Florida International University, Department of Biological Sciences, Miami, FL, USA

Brigitta Ine Van Tussenbroek, Universidad Nacional Autonoma de Mexico, Institute of Marine Sciences and Limnology, Puerto Morelos, Mexico

Time line:

Submissions system will be open by July 2021

All articles must be submitted until: January 2022.

Please consult:



Davon Baker

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