This web site has been set up to provide a focal point for all things bryophte-related in Hampshire. Follow the links opposite for more information and please contact me (John Norton) if you have any queries or comments, or would like me to put up any news, information or photos on this web site.
Although Hampshire is a relatively warm, dry and flat county it has a relatively rich
bryoflora. The county supports at least 492 recognisable taxa, made up of 121 liverworts, 3 hornworts and 368 mosses. Excluding subspecies and varieties, the total of about 485 species amounts to 45% of the British flora of 1069 species, as covered by the 2014 Atlas of British & Irish Bryophytes. The species richness of the flora is helped especially by the extensive areas of wet heath and bog in the New Forest where several species have been recorded that are more at home in the wetter west and north of Britain, here occurring well outside their main range. The New Forest also has the largest population of the British Red Data moss Zygodon forsteri which is epiphytic on old Beech trees. Away from the Forest the most important habitat is the Chalk, on which there are at least three quite different communities, including one on warm, exposed substrates with species such as Weissia condensa and Abietinella abietina and another on cooler, higher altitude grassland, notable here for the calcicole liverwort Scapania aspera and nicknamed the
southern hepatic mat by Francis Rose. A small but apparently thriving population of the Red Data liverwort Cephaloziella baumgartneri, a limestone-loving species, was recently discovered on an ancient abbey in the south of the county. Other species in Hampshire with significant populations in a Britain and Ireland context include the liverworts Targionia hypophylla and Pallavicinia lyellii, and the mosses Dicranum spurium and Hypnum imponens.
A more detailed summary of VC11, written by Rod Stern, can be found on the BBS web site. A bryophyte Notables list for Hampshire is currently in preparation. Distribution maps of all taxa may be viewed by following the link opposite.
The British Bryological Society's Southern Group meets about once a month during October to April to record bryophytes in Hampshire and occasionally parts of neighbouring counties, including the Isle of Wight. Because some meetings are arranged at short notice and may be cancelled due to bad weather we operate an e-mail contact list for the group, so please get in touch if you would like to be put on this list to receive advance notification of meetings. Beginners are welcome!
Reasonably experienced bryologists who visit the county and wish to send in records directly can do so using a spreadsheet recording form or by using one of the BRC recording cards. Records can also be submitted via Living Record. Follow the Recording forms link opposite for further details.