Witch’s Hair, Acid Kelp

Desmarestia aculeata

Color: Brown
Shape: Branched, Bushy
Texture: Smooth
Size: Up to 3’+
Zone: Low Intertidal to Subtidal
Range: Alaska to Oregon

Description: This highly branching seaweed is connected to a small, disc-shaped holdfast. The many thin, round branches give it a busy appearance. 

Edibility: Do not eat. 

Distinctive characteristics: Releases sulfuric acid when damaged. 

Collection notes: Best to avoid. The acid released by this seaweed will destroy other seaweeds collected if left in the same container.

Phylum: Phaeophyta (Brown Algae)
Previous names: Fucus aculeatus, Desmarestia intermedia
Similar species: Desmarestia viridis

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