Mosses


There are over 750 species of moss in Britain and they are a prominent part of the landscape on Skye.

Mosses can be divided into two main morphological groups: acrocarps and pleurocarps. These are not recognised taxonomic groups, but they are very useful for identification purposes, so I have retained them in what follows.

acrocarps

Upright habit.
Largely unbranched.
Spore capsule grows from tip of shoot.

pleurocarps

Prostrate habit.
Always branched, sometimes bipinnate or even tripinnate.
Spore capsule does not grow from tip of shoot.

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Breutelia chrysocoma
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Hylocomium splendens
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Mnium hornum
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Rhytidiadelphus loreus


Major orders of acrocarpous mosses found on Skye

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ANDREAEALES
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Andreaea rupestris


POLYTRICHALES
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Pogonatum urnigerum

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Atrichum undulatum

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Polytrichum juniperinum


DICRANALES - Dicranaceae
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Campylopus introflexus

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Dicranum scoparium


DICRANALES - Ditrichaceae
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Ditrichum gracile


DICRANALES - Rhabdoweisiaceae
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Dichodontium palustre

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Dichodontium pellucidum


DICRANALES - Fissidentaceae
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Fissidens taxifolius

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Fissidens taxifolius

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Fissidens taxifolius


POTTIALES
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Tortella tortuosa


GRIMMIALES - Grimmiaceae
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Racomitrium lanuginosum

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Racomitrium fasciculare

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Racomitrium heterostichum


GRIMMIALES - Ptychomitriaceae
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Ptychomitrium polyphyllum

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Ptychomitrium polyphyllum

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Ptychomitrium polyphyllum


SPLACHNALES
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Splachnum ampullaceum


BRYALES - Bryaceae
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Bryum capillare

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Bryum pseudotriquetrum


BRYALES - Mniaceae
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Mnium hornum


BRYALES - Bartramiaceae
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Breutelia chrysocoma

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Philonotis fontana


SPHAGNALES


Major families of pleurocarpous mosses found on Skye

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HYPNALES - Entodontaceae

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Pseudoscleropodium purum

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Pseudoscleropodium purum


HYPNALES - Fontinalaceae


HYPNALES - Hypnaceae

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Ctenidium molluscum

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Orthothecium rufescens

HYPNALES - Hypnaceae

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Hypnum jutlandicum

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Hypnum jutlandicum


HYPNALES - Leucodontaceae


HYPNALES - Myuriaceae


HYPNALES - Neckeraceae

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Neckera crispa


HYPNALES - Thuidiaceae

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Thuidium tamariscinum


HYPNALES - Amblystegiaceae


HYPNALES - Calliergonaceae

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Calliergonella cuspidata

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Calliergonella cuspidata


HYPNALES - Campyliaceae


HYPNALES - Lembophyllaceae

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Isothecium myosuroides


HYPNALES - Brachytheciaceae

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Cirriphyllum piliferum

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Cirriphyllum piliferum

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Eurhynchium striatum


HYPNALES - Ceratophyllaceae


HYPNALES - Plagiotheciaceae


HYPNALES - Hylocomiaceae

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Hylocomium splendens

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Rhytidiadelphus triquetrus

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Rhytidiadelphus loreus

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Rhytidiadelphus squarrosus


Useful links: British Bryological Society field guide
Scottish Natural Heritage