BFNA Title: Mastigophoraceae
Author: W. B. Schofield 
Date: June 8, 2005
Edit Level: R Brumm+
Version: 1

Bryophyte Flora of North America, Provisional Publication
Missouri Botanical Garden
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MASTIGOPHORACEAE Schuster, J. Hattori Bot. Lab. 36: 345. 1972

W. B. Schofield


Plants large, 5--15 cm; branching exclusively terminal, pinnate to bipinuate. Stem with cortical cells collenchymatous, cuticle smooth; anisophyllous. Leaves asymmetric, the antical lobe larger and undivided, the postical 1--4 subdivided; dioicous. Sexual condition with sexual branches short; perianth rudimentary, often divided into lobed bracts. Capsule spherical, epidermal cells largely without secondary thickenings.


Genera 2 (1 in the flora): Predominantly Old World tropical and subtropical to Southern Hemisphere temperate (New Zealand).


The only genus of the family in the North Temerate Zone is Mastigophora..


SELECTED REFERENCE: Inoue, H. Memoir of the Genus Mastigophora Nees.  Bull. Nat. Sci. Museum (Tokyo) 14: 603--608.


XX. MASTIGOPHORA Nees, Naturg. Europ. Leberm. 3: 89. 1883, conserved name * [Greek mastix, whip, and phora, carrying, referring to flagelliform branch apices]


            Plants in loose rusty or orange-brown to nearly black mats of erect, reclining to semi-erect or arching shoots, regularly to irregularly pinnate or 2-prinnate, the branch apices frequently attenuate and flagelliform; rhizoids absent or scarce, confined to leaves at apices of flagelliform branches.  Leaves of stem incubous to transverse, asymmetrical, convex, postical lobes of stem leaves acuminate to ciliate, leaf cells with large, nodular, sometimes confluent trigones; branch leaves also asymmetric but usually unequally 2-lobed; oil bodies spherical, elliptical or fusiform; underleaves 1/2 size of lateral and 2--4 lobed with broadly recurved lateral margins and sinus gibbous; paraphyllia usually scarce, forked or simple.  Sexual condition dioicous.  Specialized asexual reproduction absent.  Sporophytes unknown in Northern Hemisphere.


            Species 4 (1 in the flora):  disjunctive between w North America, w Europe, se Asia, and Pacific Islands (New Zealand); terrestrial or epiphytic, cliffs, peatland, predominantly in high-moisture temperate to subtropical climates, 0--4000 m.


1. Mastigophora woodsii (Hooker) Nees, Naturg. Europ. Leberm. 3:95. 1838


Jungermannia woodsii Hooker, Brit. Jung. tab. 66. 1814


            Plants reddish or golden-brown to nearly black; branches frequently with branchlets, some flagelliform, others blunt, especially at the apex of the main shoot and most distal branches.  Leaves of stem not strongly overlapping on the red-brown stem, exposing the parallel-oriented abundant filiform paraphyllia, usually 3-lobed, the antical markedly larger than the others, with ciliate margins; branch leaves more closely overlapping; underleaves 2-lobed, margins ciliate.  Sexual branches and sporophytes unknown.


            Mainly in extremely humid sites in high-moisture climates near the ocean, in peatland, usually somewhat shaded, bogs, cliff shelves, stream banks; 0--50 m, but to 4000 m in Himalayas; B.C. (Queen Charlotte Islands, Pitt Island); Europe (Faeroe Islands, w Ireland, Scotland; Asia (India, Taiwan).


            The species is clearly relictual in its whole range, lacking sexual or vegetative reproduction, and the distribution apparently strongly controlled by an extremely high-moisture climate.

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