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News From MO: 2000

Mosses

The bryophyte collection at MO numbers nearly 300,000 and increases by about 18,000 each year. Acquisitions are primarily from tropical and south temperate areas. In the past few years, several orphaned collections have been acquired and are being incorporated into the collection to make them available to bryologists for study. Marshall R. Crosby [webpage] continues his work on the Index of Mosses. The latest addition, Index of Mosses, 1996-1998, was published this year in the Garden's Monographs in Systematic Botany from the Missouri Botanical Garden as Volume 62. Information from this addition and the Index of Mosses database is now available online. Crosby completed A World Checklist of Mosses, the first edition of which was printed for the International Botanical Congress held in St. Louis in August 1999. Robert E. Magill [webpage] began work on the fourth and last part of the mosses for the Flora of Southern Africa. Fascicle 3, Erpodiaceae through Hookeriaceae, was published in 1998. He is also concerned with the mosses of tropical Africa, an area that has never had its mosses treated as a whole. This program will involve field work throughout the area. Through the years, MO's curators have also collected substantial quantities of mosses in tropical Africa, and these will add greatly to the specimen base for the project. The Moss Flora of Central America is continuing. The first fascicle, Sphagnaceae-Calymperaceae, was published in 1994. The second volume, Encalyptaceae-Orthotrichaceae, is in press. The aims of the project are to do additional collecting in poorly known areas; to involve Central American counterparts; and to produce a moss Flora similar in format to Bartram's Mosses of Guatemala (1949). This manual will complement the moss Floras of Mexico (H. Crum and A. J. Sharp, MICH and TENN) and the West Indies (W. R. Buck, NY). The project is being written by Bruce Allen, who continues to collect in little known areas of Central America. Si He [webpage] has completed annotated checklists of the mosses of Thailand and Chile. Both are on the Bryology website. He continues working on the National Science Foundation-sponsored Moss Flora of China. Steven Churchill [webpage] is continuing his research on the moss flora of Colombia and retains his interests in the Great Plains mosses of North America. He is currently investigating the possibility of undertaking a moss flora of the Andes, a massive undertaking that would cover most of the moss diversity in South America. Leonardo Mourré and Carol Hebblethwaite continue to packet the backlog of bryophyte specimens. Barbara Mack handles numerous administrative matters for the bryology group. Greg Pedano manages the bryophyte collection and should be contacted about loans or use of the bryophyte laboratory (pedano@mobot.org).

Missouri Botanical Garden's PEET (Partnerships for Enhancing Expertise in Taxonomy) Project in Systematic Bryology is a National Science Foundation program designed to encourage the training of new generations of taxonomists and to translate current expertise into electronic databases and other formats with broad accessibility to the scientific community. Three major elements are included in the PEET projects: monographic research, training, and computer infrastructure. A monograph of the Pilotrichelloideae (Musci: Meteoriaceae) has been undertaken under the Direction of Robert E. Magill and Bruce Allen. The Meteoriaceae (22 genera, 300 species) are a tropical, Leucodontalian family concentrated in the Southern hemisphere. The subfamily Pilotrichelloideae, which contains 111 species in eight genera, is the monographic component of this project. Three bryology students, Zacharia Magombo [webpage], Michelle Price [webpage], and Christina Casado [webpage], are assisting in this program. The students are also preparing revisions of Streptopogon, Diphysium, and Holomitrium respectively. In addition, Price is just completing a revision of Rhynchostegiopsis and Magombo a study of Floribundaria.

Bryoflora of China, English Version: The Missouri Botanical Garden is cooperating with Chinese bryologists from several institutions within the Chinese Academy of Sciences and two universities to produce an English version of the Flora Bryophytarum Sinicorum. The project is guided by a joint International Editorial Committee consisting of five Chinese and five other members from Canada, Finland, Japan, and the U.S. The Committee is co-chaired by Wu Pan-cheng (PE) and Marshall R. Crosby, who also supervises the project operation at MO. Si He, the project coordinator, is responsible for tracking and editing manuscripts, corresponding with authors, collaborators, and reviewers, and writing proposals. The current focus of the project is a moss flora. It will be published in somewhat condensed form in a total of eight volumes, with illustrations of Chinese and East Asian endemic taxa. The taxonomic treatments are generally written by Chinese authors. In most cases, the Chinese authors collaborate with western experts to produce final drafts of the treatments. The English version of the Flora will more or less correspond with the Chinese edition. Volume 1 of the Flora was published in June 1999 and is available through MBG Press. Volume 2, which will treat the Fissidentaceae, Calymperaceae, Encalyptraceae, Pottiaceae, and Ptychomitriaceae, is expected to appear in late Fall of 2000. The coordination center at MO is currently editing and soliciting the manuscripts for Volume 3, containing mainly the Hookeriaceae, Fabroniaceae, Laskeaceae, and Thuidiaceae.

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