Oxyrrhynchium hians, photographed by Des Callaghan.

Belongs within: Hypnales.
Contains: Isothecium, Sciuro-hypnum, Brachythecium, Rhynchostegium, Eurhynchium, Rhynchostegiella.

The Brachytheciaceae are a family of mosses that usually grow in mats or clumps. The family is distinguished by their pattern of pseudoparaphyllia, and the absence of papillae on the laminal cells (Ignatov & Huttunen 2002). More than 570 species are included in the family, making it one of the largest recognised families of pleurocarpous mosses. Members of the genus Brachythecium have irregular branches, more or less ovate-acuminate leaves, and inclined or horizontal capsules with a conical lid (Dixon 1924).

Characters (from Smith 2004): Slender to robust plants. Stems creeping to ascending, sparsely and irregularly to closely and pinnately branched, branches straight to curved, complanate or not, spreading to erect. Paraphyllia usually absent. Leaves imbricate to spreading, rarely complanate, stem and branch leaves similar or not, plane or concave, plicate or not, broadly ovate to narrowly lanceolate, apex obtuse or rounded to longly acuminate; costa single, sometimes ending in a small projection on abaxial side of leaf, rarely forked or double; cells elongate-hexagonal to linear-vermicular, usually smooth, basal cells shorter, often porose, alar cells differentiated or not, forming auricles or not. Setae long, usually reddish, smooth or papillose with projecting cell ends; capsules erect, inclined or horizontal, ovoid to cylindrical, straight, curved or gibbous; annulus differentiated or not; lid conical, with or without rostrate to subulate beak; peristome double, exostome teeth horizontally striate below, papillose above, endostome with tall basal membrane and usually well-developed cilia; calyptrae cucullate, naked.

<==Brachytheciaceae [Brachythecieae]
    |    |--Sciuro-hypnumOZB-O03
    |    |--BrachytheciumS04
    |    `--Kindbergia Ochyra 1982OZB-O03, II03 [=Stokesiella (Kindb.) Robinson 1967 non Lemmerm. 1908II03]
    |         `--K. praelonga (Hedw.) Ochyra 1982II03, SK02 (see below for synonymy)
    |    |--Eurhynchiastrum Ignatov & Huttunen 2002OZB-O03
    |    |--Brachytheciastrum Ignatov & Huttunen 2002OZB-O03
    |    |    |--B. collinum (Schleich. ex Müll.Hal.) Ignatov & Huttunen 2002 [=Brachythecium collinum]OZB-O03
    |    |    |--B. fendleri (Sull.) Ochyra & Żarnowiec in Ochyra, Żarnowiec & Bednarek-Ochyra 2003 (see below for synonymy)OZB-O03
    |    |    `--B. vanekii (Šmarda) Ochyra & Żarnowiec in Ochyra, Żarnowiec & Bednarek-Ochyra 2003 (see below for synonymy)OZB-O03
    |    `--Homalothecium Schimp. in Bruch, Schimp. & Gümbel 1851OZB-O03
    |         |--H. leskeoidesJ87
    |         |--H. lutescens (Hedw.) Rob. 1962S04 (see below for synonymy)
    |         |--H. philippeanum (Spruce) Schimp. in Bruch, Schimp. & Gümbel 1851 (see below for synonymy)OZB-O03
    |         `--H. sericeum (Hedw.) Schimp. in Bruch, Schimp. & Gümbel 1851S04 (see below for synonymy)
    |    |--RhynchostegiumS04
    |    |--EurhynchiumOZB-O03
    |    |--Plasteurhynchium Fleisch. ex Broth. in Engl. 1925OZB-O03
    |    |--Pseudoscleropodium (Limpr.) Fleischer in Broth. 1925OZB-O03, S04
    |    |    `--P. purum (Hedw.) Fleischer in Broth. 1925S04 (see below for synonymy)
    |    `--Platyhypnidium Fleischer 1923OZB-O03, SK02
    |         |--P. alopecuroides (see below for synonymy)S04
    |         |--P. austrinum (Hooker & Wilson) Fleischer 1923 (see below for synonymy)SK02
    |         |--P. muelleri (Jaeger) Fleischer 1923SK02
    |         `--P. riparioides (Hedw.) Dixon 1934S04 (see below for synonymy)
         |--Oxyrrhynchium (Schimp.) Warnst. 1905 (nom. cons.)OZB-O03, II03 (see below for synonymy)
         |    |--*O. hians (Hedw.) Loeske 1907II03, OZB-O03 (see below for synonymy)
         |    |--O. schleicheri (Hedw.) Röll. 1915S04 (see below for synonymy)
         |    `--O. speciosum (Brid.) Warnst. 1905S04 (see below for synonymy)
         `--Cirriphyllum Grout 1898OZB-O03, S04 [incl. Brachythecium sect. Pseudocirriphyllum Ignatov 1998OZB-O03]
              |--C. cirrosum (Schwägr.) Grout 1898S04 (see below for synonymy)
              |--C. crassinervium (Taylor) Loeske & Fleisch. 1907S04 (see below for synonymy)
              |--C. koponeniiOZB-O03
              |--C. piliferum (Hedw.) Grout 1898S04 (see below for synonymy)
              |--C. tenuicaule (Spruce) Wijk & Margad. 1959 (see below for synonymy)OZB-O03
              `--C. tommasiniiM09 (see below for synonymy)
Brachytheciaceae incertae sedis:
  ‘Pilotrichella’ perpinnata [=Barbella perpinnata (Broth.) Broth. 1906]SK02
  Chamberlainia Grout 1928SK02
  Streimannia Ochyra 1900SK02
  Lepyrodontopsis trichophyllaJ87
  Eriodon Montagne 1845 non Latreille 1804 (ICZN)SK02
    `--E. conostomusD03
  Bryostreimannia Ochyra 1991SK02
    `--B. turgida (Ochyra) Ochyra 1991 [=Streimannia turgida Ochyra 1990]SK02
  Scorpiurum Schimp. 1876SK02
    |--S. circinatum (Brid.) Fleisch. & Loeske 1907S04 [=Eurhynchiunm circinatumS04, Hypnum circinatumD24]
    `--S. cucullatum (Mitt.) Hedenäs 1996 (see below for synonymy)SK02
  Scleropodium Schimp. in Bruch et al. 1853S04
    |--S. australe Hedenäs 1996SK02
    |--S. cespitans (Wilson ex Müll. Hal.) Koch 1950S04 (see below for synonymy)
    `--S. tourettii (Brid.) Koch 1948 [=S. tourretii (l. c.)]S04

Brachytheciastrum fendleri (Sull.) Ochyra & Żarnowiec in Ochyra, Żarnowiec & Bednarek-Ochyra 2003 [=Leskea fendleri Sull. 1849, Brachythecium fendleri]OZB-O03

Brachytheciastrum vanekii (Šmarda) Ochyra & Żarnowiec in Ochyra, Żarnowiec & Bednarek-Ochyra 2003 [=Brachythecium vanekii Šmarda 1953]OZB-O03

Cirriphyllum cirrosum (Schwägr.) Grout 1898S04 [=Brachythecium (sect. *Pseudocirriphyllum) cirrosum (Schwägr.) Schimp. 1860S04, OZB-O03, Eurhynchium cirrosumS04, Hypnum cirrosumD24, Paramyurium cirrosumOZB-O03; incl. H. herjedalicumOZB-O03]

Cirriphyllum crassinervium (Taylor) Loeske & Fleisch. 1907S04 [=Eurhynchium crassinerviumS04, Hypnum crassinerviumD24; incl. Brachythecium funckiiOZB-O03, Cirriphyllum crassinervium var. pachyneuronOZB-O03]

Cirriphyllum piliferum (Hedw.) Grout 1898S04 [=Brachythecium piliferumS04, Eurhynchium piliferumS04, Hypnum piliferumD24, Paramyurium piliferumOZB-O03, Rhynchostegium piliferumOZB-O03]

Cirriphyllum tenuicaule (Spruce) Wijk & Margad. 1959 [=Brachythecium tenuicaule, C. vaucheri ssp. tenuicaule; incl. C. germanicum, Eurhynchium germanicum, Paramyurium germanicum]OZB-O03

Cirriphyllum tommasiniiM09 [=Brachythecium tommasinii (Sndtn. ex Boulay) Ignatov & Huttunen 2002OZB-O03, Eurhynchium tommasiniiOZB-O03; incl. Cirriphyllum molliculumOZB-O03, C. tenuinerveOZB-O03, C. vaucheriOZB-O03, Eurhynchium vaucheriD24]

Homalothecium lutescens (Hedw.) Rob. 1962S04 [=Brachythecium lutescensOZB-O03, Camptothecium lutescensS04, Hypnum lutescensD24, Isothecium lutescensOZB-O03; incl. Camptothecium lutescens var. fallaxD24, Homalothecium lutescens var. fallaxS04]

Homalothecium philippeanum (Spruce) Schimp. in Bruch, Schimp. & Gümbel 1851 [=Camptothecium philippeanum, Hypnum philippeanum, Isothecium philippeanum; incl. Camptothecium philippei, Homalothecium philippei]OZB-O03

Homalothecium sericeum (Hedw.) Schimp. in Bruch, Schimp. & Gümbel 1851S04 [=Camptothecium sericeumD24, Hypnum sericeumD24, Isothecium sericeumOZB-O03, Leskea sericeaOZB-O03, Pleuropus sericeusD24; incl. Homalothecium australiense Dixon 1948SK02, Camptothecium sericeum f. robustumOZB-O03, C. sericeum f. tenellumOZB-O03]

Kindbergia praelonga (Hedw.) Ochyra 1982II03, SK02 [=Hypnum praelongumII03, Eurhynchium praelongum (Hedw.) Schimp. 1854SK02, Oxyrrhynchium praelongumII03, Stokesiella praelongaS04; incl. Hypnum praelongum var. stokesiiD24, II03, Eurhynchium praelongum var. stokesiiS04, *Kindbergia praelonga var. stokesiiII03, S04, Panckovia stokesiiOZB-O03]

Oxyrrhynchium (Schimp.) Warnst. 1905 (nom. cons.)OZB-O03, II03 [=Eurhynchium subg. Oxyrrhynchium Schimp. in Bruch et al. 1854II03]

*Oxyrrhynchium hians (Hedw.) Loeske 1907II03, OZB-O03 [=Hypnum hiansII03, Eurhynchium hiansII03; incl. H. anomalumD24, E. swartzii var. atrovirensD24, OZB-O03, H. atrovirensD24, E. distansOZB-O03, H. praelongum var. rigidum Boulay 1872OZB-O03, E. hians var. rigidumOZB-O03, E. swartzii var. rigidumS04, Oxyrrhynchium hians var. rigidum (Boulay) Ochyra & Żarnowiec in Ochyra, Żarnowiec & Bednarek-Ochyra 2003S04, OZB-O03, E. swartzii var. robustumOZB-O03, E. swartziiD24, Hypnum swartziiII03, Oxyrrhynchium swartziiOZB-O03, O. tatrenseOZB-O03]

Oxyrrhynchium schleicheri (Hedw.) Röll. 1915S04 [=Eurhynchium schleicheriS04, Hypnum schleicheriD24; incl. E. praelongum var. abbreviatumD24, S04, E. swartzii var. abbreviatumOZB-O03]

Oxyrrhynchium speciosum (Brid.) Warnst. 1905S04 [=Eurhynchium speciosum (Brid.) Jur. 1863S04, SK02, Hypnum speciosumD24, Rhynchostegium speciosumOZB-O03; incl. Eurhynchium androgynumOZB-O03, E. speciosum f. tatrenseOZB-O03, E. uliginosumOZB-O03]

Platyhypnidium alopecuroides [=Eurhynchium rusciforme var. alopecuroides, E. alopecurum (l. c.), Rhynchostegium alopecuroides; incl. Hygrohypnum lusitanicum, Rhynchostegium lusitanicum]S04

Platyhypnidium austrinum (Hooker & Wilson) Fleischer 1923 [=Hypnum austrinum, Eurhynchium austrinum, Oxyrrhynchium austrinum; incl. Hypnum austroalpinum Hampe 1860, Brachythecium austroalpinum (Hampe) Jaeger 1878, H. moorei, Platyhypnidium moorei, Rhynchostegium moorei]SK02

Platyhypnidium riparioides (Hedw.) Dixon 1934S04 [=Eurhynchium riparioidesS04, Hypnum riparioidesOZB-O03, Oxyrrhynchium riparioidesOZB-O03, Rhynchostegium riparioidesS04; incl. Eurhynchium rusciforme var. atlanticumOZB-O03, Platyhypnidium rusciforme f. complanatumOZB-O03, E. rusciforme var. inundatumD24, P. rusciforme f. inundatumOZB-O03, P. mutatumS04, Eurhynchium rusciforme var. prolixumD24, P. rusciforme f. prolixumOZB-O03, Hypnum ruscifoliumD24, Eurhynchium rusciformeS04, H. rusciformeD24, Oxyrrhynchium rusciformeOZB-O03, Platyhypnidium rusciformeS04, Rhynchostegium rusciformeS04]

Pseudoscleropodium purum (Hedw.) Fleischer in Broth. 1925S04 [=Brachythecium purumS04, Hylocomium purumOZB-O03, Hypnum purumD24, Scleropodium purumS04; incl. S. purum f. depauperatumOZB-O03]

Scleropodium cespitans (Wilson ex Müll. Hal.) Koch 1950S04 [incl. Brachythecium caespitosumS04, Hypnum caespitosumD24, Scleropodium caespitosumS04]

Scorpiurum cucullatum (Mitt.) Hedenäs 1996 [=Hypnum cucullatum Mitt. 1856, Eurhynchium cucullatum (Mitt.) Stone & Scott 1973, Rhychostegiella cucullata, Rhynchostegium cucullatum; incl. Hypnum convolutifolium Hampe 1860, Amblystegium convolutifolium, Rhynchostegiella convolutifolia, Rhynchostegium convolutifolium, Rhynchostegiella subconvolutifolia Broth. & Watts 1912]SK02

*Type species of generic name indicated


[D24] Dixon, H. N. 1924. The Student’s Handbook of British Mosses 3rd ed. V. V. Sumfield: Eastbourne.

[D03] Dusén, P. 1903. Patagonian and Fuegian mosses. In: Scott, W. B. (ed.) Reports of the Princeton University Expeditions to Patagonia, 18961899 vol. 8. Botany pp. 63–126. The University: Princeton (New Jersey).

[II03] Ignatov, M. S., & P. Isoviita. 2003. (1579) Proposal to conserve the name Oxyrrhynchium (Brachytheciaceae, Musci) with a conserved type. Taxon 52: 352–354.

[J87] Judd, W. S. 1987. Floristic study of Morne La Visite and Pic Macaya National Parks, Haiti. Bulletin of the Florida State MuseumBiological Sciences 32 (1): 1–136.

[M09] Marstaller, R. 2009. Die Moosgesellschaften des geplanten Naturschutzgebietes “Brandenburg und Göringer Stein” bei Göringen (Wartburgkreis, Eisenach). 136. Beitrag zur Moosvegetation Thüringens. Mauritiana 20 (3): 529–557.

[OZB-O03] Ochyra, R., J. Żarnowiec & H. Bednarek-Ochyra. 2003. Census Catalogue of Polish Mosses. Institute of Botany, Polish Academy of Sciences: Cracow.

[S04] Smith, A. J. E. 2004. The Moss Flora of Britain and Ireland 2nd ed. Cambridge University Press.

[SK02] Streimann, H., & N. Klazenga. 2002. Catalogue of Australian Mosses. Flora of Australia Supplementary Series 17. Australian Biological Resources Study: Canberra.

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