BFNA Title: Chonecoleaceae
Author: D. A. Breil
Date: Oct. 2016
Edit Level: R
Version: 2

Bryophyte Flora of North America, Provisional Publication
Buffalo Museum of Science
1020 Humboldt Parkway
Buffalo, NY 14211 USA


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CHONECOLEACEAE Schuster ex Grolle

David A. Breil

Plants forming thin mats; branches from axils of leaves; without flagella. Leaves alternate, succubous, plane, bilobed, entire; underleaves minute [absent], unlobed. Rhizoids scattered over ventral stem. Specialized asexual reproduction by caducous perianths. Gynoecium terminal on an ordinary leafy branch. Perianth without subfloral branches, well developed, campanulate, mouth wide, weakly plicate near mouth, smooth below, perigynium absent.


Genera 1, species 2 (1 genus, 1 species in the flora): North America (Florida); South America.


The family Chonecoleaceae is distinguished by plants bilaterally symmetrical, green (no secondary pigmentation), branching profusely, rhizomatous and flagelliform branch systems lacking; vegetative branches lateral-intercalary. The stems lack internal differentiation; rhizoids are numerous, scattered along the lower surface of stem. Leaves are succubously inserted, as long as wide, bilobed about 1/3, lobes more or less equal in size; oil-bodies present in all leaf cells. Underleaves are absent or minute and awl-shaped. The sexual condition is monoicous; male branches are lateral with each bract containing a single large antheridium, its stalk uniseriate. Gynoecia are terminal, the bracts not or barely differentiated from leaves, and bracteole absent. Sporophyte seta elongate, differentiated internally, 8 cells in outer row, surrounding 4 inner cells, seta not articulate, capsule spherical, valves straight. Elaters are 1 spiral. Spores are minutely reticulate; germination type unknown.



1. CHONECOLEA Grolle, Rev. Bryol. Lichénol. 25: 294. 1965 * Greek chonos, funnel, and coleus, sheath, alluding to shape of perianth


1. Chonecolea doellingeri (Nees) Grolle, Revue Bryol. et Lichénol. 25: 295. 1956 (1957)

Jungermannia doellingeri Nees, Syn. Hepat., 104. 1844


Plants minute, in dense patches. Shoots 0.4--0.8 mm wide. Leaves contiguous to barely imbricate, about as wide as long, lobes broadly triangular; margins entire to crenate; leaf cells thin-walled, lacking trigones and intermediate thickenings; oil-bodies 20--30 per cell in mid-leaf, colorless, single. Underleaves best developed near apex of stem, often absent. Androecia with male bracts unequally bilobed, somewhat conduplicate, concave at base and loosely imbricate, occurring in 2-6 pairs. Perianths exserted, bell-shaped, smooth, with 4--5 obtuse, rounded keels near an open truncate apex.


Shaded trunks of palm trees in low moist forests, often occurring with the moss Octoblepharum albidum along Atlantic and Gulf Coastal Plains of Florida, 0--20 m; South America.


When sterile and without oil-bodies, Chonecolea is practically inseparable from Cylindrocolea rhizantha (Mont.) R. M. Schust. of the Cephaloziellaceae. Mature fertile plants of each species can be separated on the basis of the spore markings. The spores of Chonecolea are reticulate while those of Cylindrocolea rhizantha are smooth. Fresh sterile plants of Chonecolea have 20--30 minute oil bodies per midleaf cell, whereas Cylindrocolea rhizantha has 4--8 round, finely papillose oil bodies per midleaf cells.


SELECTED REFERENCES Schuster, R. M. 1980. Chonecolea. In R. M. Schuster. 1966--1993. Hepaticae and Anthocerotae of North America East of the Hundredth Meridian. New York. 4: 321--325.