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Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Sphagnum fuscum not in Southern Hemisphere

Subject: RE: BRYONET: S. fuscum most important bryophyte?
Date: Wed, 10 Dec 2008 08:23:17 +1100
From: Rod Seppelt <>


In reply to Ellen's questions regarding Sphagnum fuscum importance.
It is not in the southern hemisphere where Sphagnum, let alone peat
deposits, are not abundant. In Patagonia, it is probably Sphagnum
magellanicum that is the most important Sphagnum. In Australia and New
Zealand - no species really stands out.
I have seen it stated in the literature that S. fuscum is the most
significant peat former and may account for 45% of the Sphagnum peat.
What was the basis of this statement? I cannot answer that, but even in
the northern hemisphere where Sphagnum occurs in considerable
quantities, global statements need a lot more than broad statements.

Prof. Rod Seppelt,
Principal Research Scientist,
Australian Antarctic Division,
Channel highway,
Kingston 7050,
Tasmania, Australia
ph: +61 (03) 6232 3438
FAX: +61 (03) 6232 3449


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