Oxyrrhynchium hians, photographed by Des Callaghan.

Belongs within: Hypnales.

The Brachytheciaceae are a family of mosses that usually grow in mats or clumps. The family is distinguished by their pattern of pseudoparaphyllia, and the absence of papillae on the laminal cells (Ignatov & Huttunen 2002). More than 570 species are included in the family, making it one of the largest recognised families of pleurocarpous mosses.

See also: Brachythecium salebrosum: some like it temperate.

Characters (from Smith & Smith 2004): Slender to robust plants. Stems creeping to ascending, sparsely and irregularly to closely and pinnately branched, branches straight to curved, complanate or not, spreading to erect. Paraphyllia usually absent. Leaves imbricate to spreading, rarely complanate, stem and branch leaves similar or not, plane or concave, plicate or not, broadly ovate to narrowly lanceolate, apex obtuse or rounded to longly acuminate; costa single, sometimes ending in a small projection on abaxial side of leaf, rarely forked or double; cells elongate-hexagonal to linear-vermicular, usually smooth, basal cells shorter, often porose, alar cells differentiated or not, forming auricles or not. Setae long, usually reddish, smooth or papillose with projecting cell ends; capsules erect, inclined or horizontal, ovoid to cylindrical, straight, curved or gibbous; annulus differentiated or not; lid conical, with or without rostrate to subulate beak; peristome double, exostome teeth horizontally striate below, papillose above, endostome with tall basal membrane and usually well-developed cilia; calyptrae cucullate, naked.

    |  i. s.: ‘Pilotrichella’ perpinnata [=Barbella perpinnata (Broth.) Broth. 1906] SK02
    |--Chamberlainia Grout 1928 SK02
    |--Streimannia Ochyra 1900 SK02
    |--Lepyrodontopsis trichophylla J87
    |--Eriodon Montagne 1845 SK02
    |    `--E. conostomus D03b
    |--Oxyrrhynchium (Schimp.) Warnst. 1905 (nom. cons.) (see below for synonymy) II03
    |    `--*O. hians [=Hypnum hians, Eurhynchium hians; incl. H. swartzii] II03
    |--Kindbergia Ochyra 1982 [=Stokesiella (Kindb.) Robinson 1967 non Lemmerm. 1908] II03
    |    `--K. praelonga (Hedw.) Ochyra 1982 II03, SK02 (see below for synonymy)
    |--Bryostreimannia Ochyra 1991 SK02
    |    `--B. turgida (Ochyra) Ochyra 1991 [=Streimannia turgida Ochyra 1990] SK02
    |--Pseudoscleropodium (Limpr.) Fleischer ex Broth. 1925 SK02
    |    `--P. purum (Hedw.) Fleischer ex Broth. 1925 SK02
    |--Scleropodium Bruch & Schimp. 1853 SK02
    |    `--S. australe Hedenäs 1996 SK02
    |--Scorpiurum Schimp. 1876 SK02
    |    `--S. cucullatum (Mitt.) Hedenäs 1996 (see below for synonymy) SK02
    |--Isothecium FHH01
    |    |--I. comatum [=Hypnodendron comatum, Mniodendron comatum] SK02
    |    `--I. myosuroides FHH01
    |--Cirriphyllum II03
    |    |--C. cirrhosum N02
    |    `--C. reichenbachianum (see below for synonymy) II03
    |--Homalothecium Schimp. 1851 J87, SK02
    |    |--H. leskeoides J87
    |    `--H. sericeum [incl. H. australiense Dixon 1948] SK02
    |--Platyhypnidium Fleischer 1923 SK02
    |    |--P. austrinum (Hooker & Wilson) Fleischer 1923 (see below for synonymy) SK02
    |    |--P. muelleri (Jaeger) Fleischer 1923 SK02
    |    `--P. riparioides [incl. P. mutatum] VHJ03
    |--Rhynchostegiella (Schimp.) Limpr. 1896 SK02
    |    |--R. divaricatifolia N02
    |    |--R. humillima N02
    |    |--R. menadensis N02
    |    |--R. pseudoteesdalei (Hampe) Broth. in Engler & Prantl 1909 (n. d.) (see below for synonymy) SK02
    |    `--R. sachensis N02
    |--Eurhynchium Bruch & Schimp. 1854 SK02
    |    |--*E. striatum [=Hypnum striatum] II03
    |    |--E. asperipes (Mitt.) Dixon 1927 [=Hypnum asperipes] SK02
    |    |--E. crassinervium VHJ03
    |    |--E. laevisetum Geh. 1876 [=Rhynchostegium laevisetum; incl. Oxyrrhynchium howeanum Broth. & Watts 1915] SK02
    |    |--E. pulchellum (Hedw.) Jenn. 1913 JR-SM-G05
    |    |--E. pumilum (Wilson) Schimp. 1856 [=Rhynchostegiella pumila (Wilson) Warb. 1962] SK02
    |    |--E. remotifolium (Greville) Jaeger 1878 [=Hypnum remotifolium, Oxyrrhynchium remotifolium] SK02
    |    `--E. speciosum (Brid.) Jur. 1863 SK02
    |--Rhynchostegium Bruch & Schimp. 1852 SK02
    |    |--R. aristatum [=Brachythecium aristatum, Hypnum aristatum (preoc.)] SK02
    |    |--R. calderii N02
    |    |--R. celebicum N02
    |    |--R. cylindritheca Dixon 1915 (see below for synonymy) SK02
    |    |--R. distratum (Hampe) Jaeger 1878 [=Hypnum distratum] SK02
    |    |--R. fragilicuspis M49
    |    |--R. inaequale Dixon 1942 (n. d.) SK02
    |    |--R. laxatum (Mitt.) Paris 1898 (see below for synonymy) SK02
    |    |--R. muriculatum (Hooker & Wilson) Reichardt 1870 SK02 (see below for synonymy) SK02
    |    |--R. nanopennatum (Broth.) Kindb. 1891 [=Hypnum nanopennatum] SK02
    |    |--R. patulum Jaeger 1878 (n. d.) [=Hypnum patulum (preoc.)] SK02
    |    |--R. peracuminatum A49
    |    |--R. plagiotheciella Müll.Hal. 1897 SK02
    |    |--R. raphidorrhynchum (Müll.Hal.) Jaeger 1878 (n. d.) [=Hypnum raphidorrhynchum] SK02
    |    |--R. scariosum J87
    |    `--R. tenuifolium (Hedw.) Reichardt 1870 (see below for synonymy) SK02
    |         |--R. t. var. tenuifolium (see below for synonymy) SK02
    |         `--R. t. var. howeanum Broth. & Watts 1915 SK02
    `--Brachythecium Schimp. 1853 SK02
         |--B. albicans (Hedw.) Schimp. 1853 [=Chamberlainia albicans (Hedw.) Rob. 1962] SK02
         |--B. brachycladum N02
         |--B. buchananii N02
         |--B. campestre [=Chamberlainia campestris (Müll.Hal.) Rob. 1962, Hypnum campestre] SK02
         |--B. curvatulum N02
         |--B. falcatulum N02
         |--B. formosanum N02
         |--B. kamounense N02
         |--B. latinervium Hedenäs 1996 SK02
         |--B. longicuspidatum N02
         |--B. longidens D03b
         |--B. mildeanum (Schimp.) Milde 1862 SK02
         |--B. morenoi D03b
         |--B. obsoletinerve N02
         |--B. pachytheceum N02
         |--B. paradoxum (Hooker & Wilson) Jaeger 1878 [=Hypnum paradoxum] SK02
         |--B. plumosum (Hedw.) Schimp. 1853 [incl. B. kayseri Geh. 1876, Hypnum pseudoplumosum] SK02
         |--B. populeum N02
         |--B. procumbens N02
         |--B. rivulare Schimp. 1853 SK02
         |--B. rutabulum (Hedw.) Schimp. 1853 [=Hypnum rutabulum; incl. B. novae-valesiae Geh. 1876] SK02
         |--B. salebrosum (Weber & Mohr) Schimp. 1853 (see below for synonymy) SK02
         |--B. sericeo-virens D03b
         |--B. spegazzinii D03b
         |--B. spurio-albicans D03b
         |--B. stereopoma J87
         |--B. subpilosum D03b
         |--B. subplicatum M49
         |--B. velutinum FHH01
         |--B. wichurae N02
         `--B. zanonii J87

Nomina nuda: Brachythecium cuspidarioides Dusén 1903 D03b
             Brachythecium majusculum Dusén 1903b
             Brachythecium sericeo-nitens Dusén 1903 D03a
             Brachythecium subtilicaule Dusén 1903 D03b
             Brachythecium turgens Dusén 1903 D03b
             Isothecium serpens Dusén 1903 D03b
             Rhynchostegium byssicladum Dusén 1903 D03b
             Rhynchostegium latifolium Geh. 1876 SK02
             Rhynchostegium mollissimum Dusén 1903 D03b
             Rhynchostegium obtusissimum Geh. 1876 [=R. obtusum Mitt. 1882] SK02
             Rhynchostegium strictiusculum Broth. ex Bailey 1891 [=R. strictifolium Broth. ex Paris 1898] SK02

Brachythecium salebrosum (Weber & Mohr) Schimp. 1853 [=Hypnum salebrosum, Chamberlainia salebrosa (Weber & Mohr) Rob. 1962] SK02

Cirriphyllum reichenbachianum [=Hypnum reichenbachianum, Eurhynchium velutinoides (nom. illeg.); incl. Hypnum flotowianum, Cirriphyllum floto-wianum] II03

Kindbergia praelonga (Hedw.) Ochyra 1982 II03, SK02 [=Hypnum praelongum II03, Eurhynchium praelongum (Hedw.) Schimp. 1854 SK02, Oxyrrhynchium praelongum II03; incl. H. stokesii II03, Eurhynchium stokesii II03, *Kindbergia stokesii II03]

Oxyrrhynchium (Schimp.) Warnst. 1905 (nom. cons.) [=Eurhynchium subg. Oxyrrhynchium Schimp. in Bruch et al. 1854] II03

Platyhypnidium austrinum (Hooker & Wilson) Fleischer 1923 [=Hypnum austrinum, Eurhynchium austrinum, Oxyrrhynchium austrinum; incl. Hypnum austroalpinum Hampe 1860, Brachythecium austroalpinum (Hampe) Jaeger 1878, H. moorei, Platyhypnidium moorei, Rhynchostegium moorei] SK02

Rhynchostegiella pseudoteesdalei (Hampe) Broth. in Engler & Prantl 1909 (n. d.) [=Hypnum pseudoteesdalei, Eurhynchium pseudoteesdalei, Rhynchostegium pseudoteesdalei] SK02

Rhynchostegium cylindritheca Dixon 1915 [=Eriodon cylindritheca (Dixon) Dixon & Sainsbury 1945; incl. Helicodontiadelphus australiensis, Helicodontium colliei (nom. inv.)] SK02

Rhynchostegium laxatum (Mitt.) Paris 1898 [=Hypnum laxatum, H. luxatum (l. c.), Rhynchostegium taxatum (l. c.); incl. H. dentiferum Hampe 1860, R. dentiferum (Hampe) Jaeger 1878, R. elusum, Hypnum pseudomurale, R. pseudomurale (Hampe) Jaeger 1878] SK02

Rhynchostegium muriculatum (Hooker & Wilson) Reichardt 1870 SK02 [=Hypnum muriculatum SK02, Eurhynchium muriculatum SK02, E. muricatulum (l. c.) M49, Rhynchostegiella muriculata (Hooker & Wilson) Broth. 1909 SK02; incl. Hypnum pterocladum (nom. inv.) SK02]

Rhynchostegium tenuifolium (Hedw.) Reichardt 1870 [=Hypnum tenuifolium, Amblystegiella tenuifolia, Helicodontium tenuifolium (nom. inv.), Isothecium tenuifolium] SK02

Rhynchostegium tenuifolium
(Hedw.) Reichardt 1870 var. tenuifolium [incl. Hypnum collatum, Rhynchostegium collatum, H. confertum (nom. inv.), H. collatum var. laxifolium, H. collatum var. minus non H. cupressiforme var. minus, H. radicole (nom. inv.), H. subclavatum, Rhynchostegium subclavatum] SK02

Scorpiurum cucullatum (Mitt.) Hedenäs 1996 [=Hypnum cucullatum Mitt. 1856, Eurhynchium cucullatum (Mitt.) Stone & Scott 1973, Rhychostegiella cucullata, Rhynchostegium cucullatum; incl. Hypnum convolutifolium Hampe 1860, Amblystegium convolutifolium, Rhynchostegiella convolutifolia, Rhynchostegium convolutifolium, Rhynchostegiella subconvolutifolia Broth. & Watts 1912] SK02

*Type species of generic name indicated


[A49] Allison, K. W. 1949. Description of a new species with notes and localities for some Otago and Southland mosses. Transactions and Proceedings of the Royal Society of New Zealand 77 (2): 278-283.

[D03a] Dusén, P. 1903a. The vegetation of western Patagonia. In Reports of the Princeton University Expeditions to Patagonia, 1896-1899, vol. 8 – Botany (W. B. Scott, ed.) pp. 1-34. The University: Princeton (New Jersey).

[D03b] Dusén, P. 1903b. Patagonian and Fuegian mosses. In Reports of the Princeton University Expeditions to Patagonia, 1896-1899, vol. 8 – Botany (W. B. Scott, ed.) pp. 63-126. The University: Princeton (New Jersey).

[FHH01] Frey, W., M. Hofmann & H. H. Hilger. 2001. The gametophyte-sporophyte junction: Unequivocal hints for two evolutionary lines of archegoniate land plants. Flora 196: 431-445.

Ignatov, M. S., & S. Huttunen. 2002. Brachytheciaceae (Bryophyta)—a family of sibling genera. Arctoa 11: 245-296.

[II03] Ignatov, M. S., & P. Isoviita. 2003. (1579) Proposal to conserve the name Oxyrrhynchium (Brachytheciaceae, Musci) with a conserved type. Taxon 52: 352-354.

[JR-SM-G05] Johansen, R. M., A. P. Retana-Salazar & A. Mojica-Guzmán. 2005. A review of the New World bryophyte-feeding genus Wegenerithrips Johansen 1983 (Insecta, Thysanoptera, Thripidae). Senckenbergiana Biologica 85 (1): 61-83.

[J87] Judd, W. S. 1987. Floristic study of Morne La Visite and Pic Macaya National Parks, Haiti. Bulletin of the Florida State Museum – Biological Sciences 32 (1): 1-136.

[M49] Martin, W. 1949. Distribution of the mosses indigenous to New Zealand (supp. no. 1). Transactions and Proceedings of the Royal Society of New Zealand 77 (3): 355-360.

[N02] Negi, H. R. 2002. Abundance and diversity of moss communities of Chopta-Tunganath in the Garhwal Himalaya. Journal of the Bombay Natural History Society 99 (3): 418-433.

Smith, A. J. E., & R. Smith. 2004. The Moss Flora of Britain and Ireland, 2nd ed. Cambridge University Press.

[SK02] Streimann, H., & N. Klazenga. 2002. Catalogue of Australian Mosses. Flora of Australia Supplementary Series 17. Australian Biological Resources Study: Canberra.

[VHJ03] Vanderpoorten, A., L. Hedenäs & A.-L. Jacquemart. 2003. Differentiation in DNA fingerprinting and morphology among species of the pleurocarpous moss genus, Rhytidiadelphus (Hylocomiaceae). Taxon 52: 229-236.

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