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Area: 912,050 square kilometers. Sixth largest country in South America.

Geography and Vegetation: There are five principle regions in Venezuela, 1) Maracaibo lowlands in the northwest, 2) the east-west arc of mountains that extend from Colombia along the north, 3) the llanos (Orinoco) in the central portion, essentially separating the Andean region from the Amazon-tepui region, 4) Amazonian and Orinoco Delta lowlands, and 5) the Guayana Highlands to the southeast.

Vascular Plant Diversity: 15,820 species, 2,481 genera, 275 families (Duno de Stefano et al. 2009).

Moss Diversity: 734 species.

moss Generic Endemism: Two monotypic genera, both from the tepui region of the Guiana Highlands.

  • Holomitriopsis H. Rob.  - Leucobryaceae: H. laevifolia (Broth.) H. Rob., distributed between the interface of lowland and montane to moderately high montane forest at elevations from 950-2750 m, is found on trees, and humic or sandy soil. This species is also recorded from the Guiana Highlands of  Brazil.
  • Steyermarkiella H. Rob. - Leucobryaceae: S. anomalodictya H. Rob. Apparently rare, this species is known from premontane forest at an elevation of 1000 m, occurring on tree branches.

Species Endemism: Estimated number of endemic species for Venezuela from the Andes 13.

Floristic Coverage: Moderately well collected, at least in terms of species diversity per geographical region which includes: the Andean region (Los Andes de Mérida, Cordillera de la Costa, Serranía de Paria), lowlands forest of the Río Orinoco/Río Negro, and tepui regions. Areas in need of systematic inventory include: 1) montane region bordering Colombia, both the Sierra Perija and the combined region of San Cristóbal/Cúcuta depression and adjoining lower western slopes of Los Andes de Mérida, probably most of the southeastern flank of the Los Andes de Mérida, 2) llanos, particularly the gallery forest, and 3) the Orinoco Delta region.

TROPICOS: 3414+ bryophytes.

Infrastructure: Herbaria include both MER and VEN.
MERC (Herbario, Centro Jardín Botánico Universidad de Los Andes). Web page: http://www.botanica.ciens.ula.ve/
VEN (Fundación Instituto Botánico de Venezuela Dr. Tobías Lasser, Herbario Nacional de Venezuela). The number of bryophyte collections ca. 9000 (2944 hepatics, 5 hornworts, 5282 mosses), about 7000 are from Venezuela. See the following web page: http://www.fibv.org.ve/jardin/

Floristic and Ecological Moss Literature for Venezuela

  • Bartram, E. B. 1951. Musci. In J. A. Steyermark, Contributions to the flora of Venezuela. Fieldiana, Bot. 28: 4-6.
  • Bartram, E. B. 1953. Paramo mosses of Venezuela and Colombia, collected by A. H. G. Alston. Bryologist 56: 165-168.
  • Bartram, E. B. 1957a. Musci. In J. A. Steyermark, Contributions to the flora of Venezuela. Fieldiana, Bot. 28: 695-718.
  • Bartram, E. B. 1957b. Musci. In B. Maguire, The botany of the Guayana highland - Part II. Mem. New York Bot. Gard. 9: 237.
  • Bartram, E. B. 1960. Musci. In B. Maguire, The botany of the Guayana highland - Part IV. Mem. New York Bot. Gard. 10: 2-10.
  • Bartram, E. B. 1963. Venezuelan mosses collected by Julian A. Steyermark. Bol. Soc. Venez. Ci. Nat. 25: 34-41.
  • Bartram, E. B. 1966. Musci. In J. A. Steyermark & G. Agostini, Exploración botnica del Cerro Patao y zonas adyacentes a Puerto Hierro, in la Peninsula de Paria, Edo. Sucre. Acta Bot. Venezuelica 1: 23-24.
  • Bermúdez R., I. R. 1978. Contribución al estudio de los musgos (Bryophyta, Musci) de la región nor-oriental de Venezuela. I. Revísta Fac. Agron. (Maracay) 9: 5-38.
  • Bermúdez R., I. R. & P. K. Bhat. 1974. Lista preliminar de los musgos hallados en la región nor-oriental de Venezuela. Mem. IV Congr. Venezolano Bot. 52-55.
  • Brotherus, V. F. 1931. Neue exotische Laubmoose. Mitt. Inst. Allg. Bot. Hamburg 8: 399-406. [Peru, Venezuela]
  • Buck, W. R. 1985. 1988. Why are there so few mosses on tepuí summits? Pages 46-51 in: T. Herben & C. B. McQueen (eds.), Proceedings of the Sixth Meeting of the Central and East European Bryological Working Group (CEBWG). Pruhonice.
  • Dozy, F. & J. H. Molkenboer. 1854. Pugillus specierum novarum e flora bryologica venezuelana. Natuurk. Verb. Holl. Maatsch. Vet. Verz. 2: 38-51.
  • Griffin, D., III. 1975a. Aloinella venezuelana, a new species of moss from the Andes of northern South America. Bull. Torrey Bot. Club 102: 26-28.
  • Griffin, D., III. 1975b. Additions to the moss flora of Venezuela. Bryologist 78: 212-215.
  • Griffin, D., III. 1976. Un retrato de la briología venezolana. Natura 9: 23-26.
  • Griffin, D., III. 1977a. Ms adiciones a la flora musqueña de Venezuela. Bryologist 80: 181-184.
  • Griffin, D., III. 1977b. Un informe sobre la briología del estado Zulia, Venezuela. Acta Bot. Venezuélica 12: 285-292.
  • Griffin, D., III. 1978. Hacia una flora del los musgos de Venezuela. Pages 141-145. Mem. Congr. Venezolano Bot. Barquisimeto (Lara) Universidat Centro-Occidental.
  • Griffin, D., III. 1979. New records for the moss flora of Venezeula. Bryologist 82: 618-619.
  • Griffin, D., III. 1982. Los musgos del Estado Mérida: (clave para los géneros). Pittieria 11: 7-56.
  • Griffin, D., III, M. López-Figueiras & L. Luis Ruiz-Tern. 1973. Additions to the moss flora of Venezuela from the State of Mérida. Phytologia 25: 107-111.
  • Hampe, E. 1847. Ein Refert über die columbischen Moose, welche von Herrn Moritz gesammelt wurden. Linnaea 20: 65-98.
  • Kis, G. 2007. Observations on Hookeriales, II. Daltonia prorata Kis (Hookeriales, Daltoniaceae), a new species from the Venezuelan Andes. Acta Bot. Hung. 49: 105-108.
  • León V., Y. & M.S. Ussher M. 2005. Educational program directed towards the preservation of Venezuelan Andean bryophytes. J. Hattori Bot. Lab. 97: 227-231.
  • León V., Y., T. Pócs & R. R. Rico R. 1998. Registros para la brioflora de los Andes Venezolanos. Cryptogamie, Bryol. Lichénol. 19: 1-25.
  • López Figueiras, M. 1976. Lista preliminar de musgos del Estado Merida. Rev. Fac. Farmacia, Univ. Los Andes 18: 31-39.
  • Mägdefrau, K. 1983. The bryophyte vegetation of the forests and páramos of Venezuela and Colombia. Nova Hedwigia 38: 1-63.
  • Morales, T. & M. Garcia. 2006(2007). Catalogo anotado de las especies venezolanas de musgos (Bryophyta) pertenecientes al Herbario Nacional de Venezuela (VEN). Trop. Bryol. 28: 103-147.
  • Moreno, E. J. 1992a. Revisión histórica de la briología en Venezuela. Trop. Bryol. 6: 139-146.
  • Moreno, E. J. 1992b. Aproximación al conocimiento de las briofitas de Venezeula. Trop. Bryol. 6: 147-156.
  • Moreno, E. & T. Morales. 2008. Lista comentada de los musgos (Bryophyta) en la región central de la Cordillera de la Costa Venezolana, colectados por E. Rutkis. I. Cryptog. Bryol. 29: 165-181. [22 families, 55 genera, 65 species.]
  • Mueller, C. 1847a. Beiträge zu einer Flora der Aequinoctial-Gegenden der neuen Welt. Coumbische Laubmoose. Linnaea 19: 193-220.
  • Mueller, C. 1847b. Novitates Bryothecae Müllerianae 2. Musci Novo-Granatenses. Linnaea 38: 572-620.
  • Mueller, C. 1848. Uber die Laubmoose der, von den Herren Funck und Schlim in Columbien veranstalteten, käuflichen Sammlung des Herren J. Linden in Luxemburg. Bot. Zeitung (Berlin) 6: 761-768; 779-781.
  • Mueller, C. 1852. Plantae Wagnerianae columbicae. Musci Frondosi. Linnaea 25: 744-745.
  • Mueller, C. 1879. Musci Fendleriani venezuelenses. Linnaea 42: 461-502.
  • Mueller, C. 1897. Musci venezuelenses novi a Professore C. Goebel collecti. Flora 83: 327-341.
  • Pérez, F. L. 1994. Vagant cryptogams in a paramo of the high Venezuelan Andes. Flora 189: 263-276.
  • Pittier, H. 1936. Los musgos de Venezuela. Bol. Soc. Venezolana Ci. Nat. 3: 353-389.
  • Pursell, R. A. 1973. Un censo de los musgos de Venezuela. Bryologist 76: 473-500.
  • Pursell, R. A. 1977. Contribución a la Brioflora de Venezuela II. Bryologist 76: 559.
  • Pursell, R. A. & C. L. Curry. 1969 [1970]. A contribution to the bryology of Venezuela. Acta Bot. Venezuelica 4: 69-85.
  • Pursell, R. A. & R. Crusco de Dall'Aglio. 1978. Contribution to the bryology of Venezuela III. Bryologist 81: 467-468.
  • Ramírez Reyes, C. & F. Bowers. 1975. Contribucion a la Brioflora del Macarao, Venezuela I. Bryologist 77: 241-242.
  • Ramírez Reyes C. & R. Crusco de Dall’Aglio. 1978. Adiciones a la Brioflora de Venezuela. Agronomía Trop. 10: 429-430.
  • Ramírez Reyes, C. & R. Crusco de Dall'Aglio. 1981. Lista de los musgos de la sección central de la Cordillera de la Costa de Venezuela. Ernstia 7: 1-14.
  • Reese, W. D. & I. R. Bermúdez R. 1980. Some new records of mosses for Venezuela. Bryologist 83: 250-251.
  • Robinson, H. 1965. Venezuelan bryophytes collected by Julian A. Steyermark. Acta Bot. Venezuelica 1: 73-83.
  • Robinson, H. 1967. Musci. In J. A. Steyermark, Flora del Auyn-tepuí. Acta Bot. Venezuelica 2: 99-109.
  • Robinson, H. 1972. Cheilothela vaginata and Syrrhopodon steyermarkii. Two new moss species from Venezuela. Phytologia 23: 390-392.
  • Robinson, H. 1976. Musci, Hepaticae. In J. A. Steyermark. La Vegetación de la Cima del Macizo de Jaua. Bol. Soc. Venez. Ci. Nat. 22: 247-262.
  • Robinson, H. 1986. Notes on the bryogeography of Venezuela. Bryologist 89: 8-12.
  • Sipman, H. J. M. 1992. Results of a lichenological and bryological exploration of Cerro Guaiquinima (Guayana Highlands, Venezeula). Trop. Bryol. 6: 1-31.
  • Williams, R. S. 1931. Musci. In H. A. Gleason, Botanical results of the Tyler-Duida Expedition. Bull. Torrey Bot. Club 58: 501-503.
  • Williams, R. S. 1934. Una colección de Musgos de los Andes Venezolanos. Bol. Soc. Venez. Ci. Nat. 14: 173-177.
  • Zander, R. H. & A. M. Cleef. 1982. Studies on Colombian cryptogams XVI. Taxonomy and ecology of Kingiobryum paramicola (Dicranaceae, Musci). Proc. Kon. Ned. Akad. Wetensch. C. 85: 627-634.

Background References Related to the Venezuelan Flora and Vegetation

  • Huber, O. & D. Frame. 1989. Venezuela. Pages 362-374. In: D. G. Campbell & H. D. Hammond (eds.), Floristic Inventory of Tropical Countries. New York Botancial Garden, Bronx.
  • Huber, O. & Wurdack, J. 1984. History of botanical exploration in Territorio Federal Amazonas, Venezuela. Smithsonian Contributions to Botany 56: 1-83.
  • Stefano, R.D. de, F. Stauffer, R. Riina, O. Huber, G. Aymard, O. Hokche, P.E. Berry & W. Meier. 2009. Assessment of vascular plant diversity and endemism in Venezuela. Candollea 64: 203-212.
  • Steyermark, J. A. 1986. Speciation and endemism in the flora of the Venezuelan tepuis. Pages 317-373. In: F. Vuilleumier & M. Monasterio (eds.), High Altitude Tropical Biogeography. Oxford University Press, New York.
  • Steyermark, J. A., P. E. Berry & B. K. Holst. 1995. Flora of the Venezuelan Guayana. Volume 1. Timber Press, Portland.
  • Vareschi, V. 1970. Flora de los Páramos. Talleres Graficos Universitarios, Mérida.

Geographic Sources for Venezuela


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