Secrets and Strengths of the Moss World

Mosses are a fascinating part of our world. They operate much like their larger relatives, like trees and shrubs, just on a much smaller scale. On Friday, January 4, 2019, Erica Heinlen shared her expertise to bring the moss world into focus for our community. In this talk, we touched on the taxonomy of mosses as well as their structure and life cycle. We discovered the importance of mosses in our ecosystems and discussed where they grow. We explored concepts of conservation and then saw some special species found here in the Okanogan. Finally, we addressed some of the “Frequently Asked Questions” the audience had about mosses. It was an interesting journey as we unlocked the secrets and strengths of the moss world.

Watch the presentation on OHA’s Highland Wonders YouTube channel:

  1. Introduction
  2. Structure of a Moss
  3. Life Cycle
  4. Where Mosses Grow
  5. Importance of Mosses to Fauna
  6. Human Uses
  7. Conservation
  8. Unique Habitat: Boreal Streams
  9. Questions, Part 1
  10. Questions, Part 2

Erica Heinlen studied botany at the University of Washington and worked for the local Forest Service for several years doing vascular plant surveys. She caught an interest in bryophytes (mosses, etc.) on the job and so attended the University of Alberta and obtained her Masters degree in 2002, on “Patterns of bryophyte diversity and rarity of the Okanogan Highlands of WA State.” She has been working part-time for the Forest Service and contracting other bryophyte work since then.

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