Field of Science

A Tiny Costa Rican Moss

This is a small moss that I found growing on some soil. It has a distichous leaf arrangement, meaning that the leaves are coming out of the stem in two rows that are 180 degrees opposite each other. This growth forms resembles the genus Fissidens, which we have in Connecticut, but I am not sure what genus this moss is in.

I thought about bring a book so that I could key out and learn the mosses while in Costa Rica. The book to use for this area of the world is the Guide to the Bryophytes of Tropical America. It is a really great book, thus I considered packing it, but in the end decided not to. Because one it is a cumbersome hardback, two I wanted to focus on learning the ferns and three I thought that we would not have much spare time for me to spend with the mosses. Unfortunately we have had plenty of spare time that I could have spent with the mosses and the guide to learn them. I have been kicking myself for not bring that book along for the past week. Hopefully I will make it down to this area of the world again so that I can focus on the mosses and learn to identify tropical species, such as the cute one balancing on my finger.

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