October 20, 2011 09:00 ET
Rare Moss Collection Donated to Canadian Museum of Nature
OTTAWA, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - Oct. 20, 2011) -
The Canadian Museum of Nature has received a donation of more than 1,500 plant specimens that includes rare and endangered species of mosses. Most represent species that were found in southern Ontario.
The additions to Canada's national plant collection come from Frank Cook, an amateur naturalist and retired biology professor from the University of Western Ontario. Cook, aged 90, now lives in Barrie, Ontario. He had amassed his collection over more than 35 years of fieldwork, starting around 1970.
"He was the consummate field biologist, who loved to tramp through bogs and fields," explains Cook's son Ian. "He realized that bryophytes were a group that hadn't had a lot of work done on them, so he saw them as an interesting subject to collect and study."
The specimens include mosses, as well as liverworts – both part of a distinctive group of small plants known as bryophytes. They are mostly from locales in southern Ontario, with some from British Columbia as well as Australia and New Zealand.
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