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Re: Moss species for James

Paul K. mentioned mosses of the Genus Mnium as being potential candidates
for use in an aquarium. Thanks Paul.

I accessed the online key from the Bryophyte Flora of North America at
http://www.nybg.org/bsci/bfna/keytable.html, and looked for listings for
Fontinalis, Vesicularia and Mnium. Here is what it says.....
48. Plants aquatic, occurring submerged at least part of the year; leaves
keeled or flat. Fontinalis

62. Lateral and dorsal leaves differentiated in areolation; stems pinnately
branched. Vesicularia

303. No leaves with lamellae; costa with or without a single stereid band;
exostome of 16 free teeth.  Mnium

Looks like you really DO need to be an expert to figure these things out....

In an effort to see if I could find out more about this Mnium moss, I
checked both the USDA Plant Database and the ITIS Database. I wanted to see
where, in relation to both Fontinalis and Vesicularia, bryologists place the
moss in the greater scheme of things and to check on the validity of the
name and the various species. I couldn't locate any listing in either of
these sources for the species name given by Paul - Mnium punctatum. I did
find others though (listed below).

From USDA Plant Database [http://www.itis.usda.gov/access.html]:
Kingdom  Plantae -- Plants
 Division  Bryophyta -- Mosses
  Subdivision  Musci
   Class  Bryopsida -- True mosses
    Subclass  Bryidae
     Order  Bryales
      Family  Mniaceae
       Genus  Mnium Hedw. -- mnium calcareous moss
     Order  Isobryales
      Family  Fontinalaceae
       Genus  Fontinalis Hedw. -- fontinalis moss
     Order  Hypnales
      Family  Hypnaceae
       Genus  Vesicularia (C. Müll.) C. Müll. -- vesicularia moss

From ITIS Database, search on "Mnium":
Report Based on TSN '16025'
Scientific Name = Mnium
Usage: accepted
Author: Hedw.
Kingdom : Plantae (3)
Rank Id: Genus
Parent and children:
16024     Mniaceae
16034     Mnium affine Bland Ex Funck.
16027     Mnium hormum Hedw.
16036     Mnium longirostrum Brid.
16028     Mnium lycopodioides Schwaegr.
16029     Mnium marginatum (With.) Brid. ex P. Beauv.
16031     Mnium spinulosum Bruch & Schimp. in B.S.G.
16026     Mnium stellare Hedw.
16030     Mnium thomsonii Schimp.
547904    Mnium ambiguum H. Müll.
547905    Mnium arizonicum Amann
547906    Mnium blyttii Bruch & Schimp in B.S.G.
547907    Mnium hornum Hedw.
547908    Mnium spinosum (Voit) Schwaegr.
Common Names:
  mnium calcareous moss
There are no synonyms for this TSN.
Review and Rating Information:
    Taxonomic Credibility Rating:   TWG standards met
    Taxonomic Completeness Rating:  complete
    Currency Rating:                1996
    No Review information on this TSN
Time and Date Stamps:
   Initial date: 06/13/1996
   Update date: 11/15/1996

While these 2 sources had nothing to say about M. punctatum, it is mentioned
and keyed out in "Moss of New England" at
http://members.aol.com/legion86/MOSS71.html and also at
http://members.aol.com/legion86/MOSS33.html. This source makes definate
mention of the wet habitat preferred by the Genus in general. Possibly very
good possibilities for use in an aquarium.

Through Google, I found a link to a page that calls Mnium "Carpet Moss" and
describes its use as a groundcover in gardens (Mnium hornum -
http://www.blueplanetbiomes.org/carpet_moss.htm). There are some nice images
online at Bioimages.Org in the UK - closeup of the plant:

Also through Google, I found a personal website done by a guy here in
Ontario "Leatherwood Trail - A Graphic Guide to Ontario Mosses"
[http://wmuma.com/moss/ggom.html]. He lists a number of Genera from wet
habitats which I suppose might be possibilities:

James Purchase