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Green Algae

The most clearly plant-like algae, this species gets its namesake hue from high levels of chlorophyll.

Their cell walls are made up of cellulose, the same material that makes up the cell walls in larger, multicellular plants. Like plants, they store the food they make through photosynthesis as starches. Growing in large masses, these algae can form visible layers of slick, green scum on the surfaces and sides of ponds, puddles or damp soil.

Fossil records suggest that the first green algae originated 500 to 600 million years ago. Early algae probably gave rise to multicellular plants.

 

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