"For now we are young let us lay in the sun and count every beautiful thing we can see" Neutral Milk Hotel.

Sunday, 9 November 2014

Searching for Liverworts with Julia Masson

(Continuation on the theme of Andy's earlier post, this time all about Liverworts)

When I arrived the search for Petalworth (Petalophillum ralfsii) was just about to start in one of the dune slacks. Soon enough we were finding liverworts all over the place but not the special one we were after. 

There were numerous specimens of Endive Pellia (Pellia endiviifolia) and a few Greasewort (Aneura pinguis) were found as well. 

 Endive Pellia (Pellia endiviifolia) Holme NWT 09/11/2014

 Greasewort (Aneura pinguis) Holme NWT 09/11/2014

After all that searching we were still no closer to finding at least a little clump of Petalworth. We moved to the next dune slack and found the area where few were once recorded.  However, the area was completely overgrown with mosses and the thatch layer was a few centimeters thick. No liverwort of any kind could ever penetrate that.

 Marsh Bryum (Bryum pseudotriquetrum) Holme NWT 09/11/2014

Decision has been made to check another area, the orchid meadow, where Julia found another tiny species of liverwort. This time it was the Bifid Crestwort (Lophocolea bidentata) which is apparently very common and easily identified by its odour. It smells like potatoes! (i.e. earthy)

 Bifid Crestwort (Lophocolea bidentata) Holme NWT 09/11/2014

The last area checked was near the main track to The Firs by a little pool. There Julia found another species: Jagged Germanderwort (Riccardia chamedryfolia) and some more Pellia.

 Jagged Germanderwort (Riccardia chamedryfolia) Holme NWT 09/11/2014

 Endive Pellia (Pellia endiviifolia) Holme NWT 09/11/2014

It was great to have bryophytes specialist with us, we learned new things and maybe one day the elusive Petalworth will reveal itself...

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