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Genus Noctiluca Suriray ex Lamarck, 1816

Monotypic genus with distinctive species. Cells unarmoured. Large (200 to > 1 mm), subspherical inflated vegetative cell with one flagellum and a striated tentacle. A ventral groove contains the single flagellum, a tooth, and tentacle. The cytoplasm is vacuolate and can contain photosynthetic symbionts. Vegetative cell with eukaryotic nucleus. Gametes gymnodinioid with dinokaryotic nucleus. Cells phagotropic; chloroplasts absent.

Planktonic and bloom former associated with massive marine life mortality events. Neritic; cosmopolitan in cold and warm water.

Species included from this genus:

Noctiluca scintillans (Macartney) Kofoid and Swezy, 1921

Genus Noctiluca