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Marchantiophyta
LIVERWORTS; HEPATICS; HEPATOPHYTA; MARCHANTIOPSIDA; JUNGERMANNIOPSIDA; NONVASCULAR PLANTS
Life   Plantae

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Frullania hattori
© Matt von Konrat, 2004 · 1
Frullania hattori
Frullania intermedia, ventral view of stem
© Matt von Konrat, 2004 · 1
Frullania intermedia, ventral view of stem

Frullania pycnantha, Liverwort
© John Braggins · 8
Frullania pycnantha, Liverwort
Isotachis, Liverwort
© John Braggins · 1
Isotachis, Liverwort

Leiomitra, Liverwort
© John Braggins · 1
Leiomitra, Liverwort
Schistochila, Liverwort
© John Braggins · 1
Schistochila, Liverwort
Kinds
Overview
The estimated number of liverwort species range from 7,500 to 9,000. Traditionally, liverworts have been subdivided into two major groups or classes based, partially, on growth form. The class Marchantiopsida, includes the well-known genera Marchantia, Monoclea, Lunularia, and Riccia, and has a complex thalloid organisation. The class Jungermanniopsida represents an estimated 85% of liverwort species and shows an enormous amount of morphological, anatomical and ecological diversity; plants with leafy shoot systems are the most common growth form in this class, e.g., Frullania, Jubulopsis, Cololejeunea, and Radula.

Phylogeny

Geographic distribution
Worldwide distribution of liverworts.

Early Land Plants Today: Global Patterns of Liverwort Diversity, Distribution, and Florisitic Knowledge.

Matt von Konrat1, Lars Söderström2, Anders Hagborg1, Matt Renner3, John Pickering4, John Engel1, & Rui-Liang Zhu5.

1Department of Botany, The Field Museum, 1400 South Lake Shore Drive, Chicago, IL 60605-2496, U.S.A. Email: mvonkonrat@fieldmuseum.org; 2Department of Biology, NTNU, N-7491 Trondheim, Norway; 3School of Biological Sciences, Heydon Laurence Building A08, University of Sydney, NSW 2006, Australia; 4517 Biological Sciences Building, University of Georgia, Athens, GA 30602-2602 U.S.A. 5Herbarium (HSNU), School of Life Science, East China Normal University, 3663 Zhong Shan North Road, Shanghai 200062, China.5

Liverworts are pivotal in our understanding of early land plant evolution. A growing body of evidence supports liverworts as the earliest diverging lineage of embryophytes. Liverworts form both a conspicuous and important component in many ecosystems throughout the world, responding rapidly to environmental change, and therefore are of ecological significance in many biotic systems.

Studies of terrestrial global diversity patterns based on quantitative data have been confined to vascular plants and animals, and more recently, macro-fungi. We here present the first preliminary data set recording the distribution of liverwort species across 368 geo-political units based on 50,000 records from over 250 published and unpublished checklists and papers.

The data set contains over 7500 valid species names. This figure may not be representative of the global species richness of hepatics, however, which is possibly much lower taken into consideration the complex synonymy in many taxa, the large number of unrevised genera and families, and the quality of the underlying data. This database is the most comprehensive catalogue of liverwort species worldwide, and makes significant steps toward the compilation of a worldwide checklist of liverworts.

The development of such a checklist has far reaching implications and applications, including global mapping of species richness; comparative studies between liverwort phytogeographic patterns with existing floristic regions and conservation hotspots as defined by vascular plants, animals, and fungi; and assessing the state of floristic knowledge and identifying geographical gaps in our understanding of the global liverwort flora. Although there are many challenges ahead to obtain high quality data, quantifying global liverwort diversity is a tractable, multi-faceted and scientifically important goal, and everyone stands to gain by fostering this endeavour. The success of the project will lie on strong collaborative between institutions and the bryological community in general.


Acknowledgements
This page and associate page on Bryophyta were written and compiled by:
William R Buck New York Botanical Gardens,
Bernard Goffinet University of Connecticut,
John J Engel The Field Museum, Chicago,
Matt von Konrat The Field Museum, Chicago, and
John Pickering University of Georgia, Athens.

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Updated: 2017-08-20 21:02:23 gmt
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