Pterobryella praenitens C. Müller in Bescherelle, 1878 — Overview

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Pterobryella praenitens is a large moss with a "dendroid" habit and is unique to Lord Howe Island in the southwest Pacific Ocean. It grows as clusters of more or less upright stems that have a "frondose" appearance because they branch extensively but not until well above their bases. It occurs in moist forest including cloud forest, and is confined to the southern mountains of Lord Howe Island. It probably reaches its greatest luxuriance in the cloud forest on the Mount Gower Plateau, but also occurs on Mount Lidgbird and in the Erskine Valley between these mountains. It is a dramatic moss and to bryologists is one of the best-known of Lord Howe Island's mosses, although the native endemiic Spiridens muelleri is perhaps at least equally striking. Although its world range is limited to just a few square miles, Pterobryella praenitens is probably not very threatened because Lord Howe Island is a United Nations World Heritage Site as well as an Australian National Park and is the subject of considerable attention from conservationists.


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