New field guide to mosses and liverworts

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Thursday 4th March 2010

bbsfieldguide_0.jpgA new field guide to mosses and liverworts has just been published by the British Bryological Society (BBS), with new keys, photos and illustrations.

Mosses and liverworts are not easy groups to study, and it requires some form of magnification to be able to identify most species. The book is, as the title says, a 'field' guide so aims to use features that can be recognised using just a hand lens and without the use of a microscope. There are new keys, good photographs and line illustrations to clarify key identification features. The guide is excellently produced, and has a staggering 850 pages, making it quite weighty.

Not all species can be identified using this guide since, as with many other taxonomic groups (e.g. lichens and fungi), only microscopic examination can separate some species. Nonetheless, as long as you don't expect to be able to identify every moss specimen that you find then this guide should provide an excellent way in to the world of bryophytes.

As the BBS says:
"The want of a field guide has for many years greatly hindered further spread of interest in British and Irish field bryology. By filling this gap in the market, the guide will make a group that has largely been the realm of specialists into an accessible and popular interest for naturalists, reaching far beyond the current pool of bryologists, and into the wider community of naturalists beyond."

For more information and details of how to order the field guide visit:
http://rbg-web2.rbge.org.uk/bbs/Activities/Field_Guide_order.htm

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