Biodiversity and biogeography of marine, reef‐forming red algal order Corallinales from western Pacific Ocean

The coral reefs are not only globally important ecosystems consisting of the richest biodiversity in all the oceans around the world, but also provide abundant biological resources for food and recreation of the human kinds.

Currently, in tropical areas, coral reefs are suffering from worldwide depletion due to unsustainable fisheries, coastline development, and also impact of global warming.

It has been pointed out by many recent coral reef researches that the current status of critical functional groups needs to be reassessed urgently. In particular, little information about biodiversity of the reef‐forming crustose coralline algae is known.

Therefore, we propose to investigate the species diversity and distribution of the reef‐forming, crustose coralline algae occurring in the western Pacific Ocean by a combination of DNA sequencing analyses and comparative morphological bservations with an emphasis on the cystocarp development in their sexual life history within a 3‐year period.