All six species are shown to possess marginal spines, a trait sporadically encountered in Pinnularia and generally rare in raphid diatoms. Besides having spines, the six species differ in their frustular morphology, including appearance and position of spines. We summarize data on their ecology and distribution using a set of 702 sediment core samples from 424 lakes from eastern USA and Canada. Pinnularia rexlowei is only known from Quaternary lacustrine deposits in Connecticut and from the surface and subfossil sediments of two lakes in northeastern USA. The other five species are relatively common, and at least one species of spine-bearing Pinnularia was found in 34% of studied lakes. Pinnularia dariana and P. torta reach as far north as Labrador, while P. alabamae, P. bihastata and P. spinifera were only encountered south of Canada. Pinnularia alabamae and P. spinifera are characteristic for lakes with relatively soft and slightly acidic water, while P. bihastata, P. dariana and P. torta are found in a wider range of physico-chemical conditions, including alkaline and eutrophic lakes.

Marina G. Potapova, Micaela H. Kersey and Laura L. Aycock 2023. Diversity and distribution of spine-bearing species of Pinnularia in eastern North America. Diatom Research.