Gonium is a genus of colonial algae, a member of the order Volvocales. Typical colonies have 4 to 16 cells, all the same size, arranged in a flat plate, with no anterior-posterior differentiation. In a colony of 16 cells, four are in the center, and the other 12 are on the four sides, three each. A description by G.M. Smith (1920, p. 94):
Gonium Mueller 1773: Colonies of 4-8-16 cells arranged in a flat quadrangular plate and embedded in a common gelatinous matrix or connected by broad gelatinous strands. Cells ovoid to pyriform, with a single cup-shaped chloroplast containing one pyrenoid. Each cell with two cilia of equal length, contractile vacuoles at the base of the cilia, and an eyespot. Four- and eight-celled colonies with the cilia on the same side ; sixteencelled colonies with the four central cells having their cilia on the same side and the twelve marginal cells with radially arranged cilia.
Asexual reproduction by simultaneous division of all cells in the colony to form autocolonies, or by a formation of 2-4 zoospores in each cell.Sexual reproduction isogamous, by a fusion of biciliate zoogametes.