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Montana Field Guides

Blytt's Kiaeria Moss - Kiaeria blyttii

Status Under Review

Global Rank: G5
State Rank: SU

Agency Status
MNPS Threat Rank:

External Links

General Description
Plants: Acrocarpous. Growing in open clumps of erect shoots, deep green to brown, not shiny. Stems simple, 1-2 cm tall; rhizoids few and near the top (FNA 2007).

Leaves: Spreading to ca 45 degrees when moist (FNA 2007), not strongly curved to the side or only slightly (Lawton 1971) or rarely so (Crum & Anderson et al. 1981), slightly bent, wavy and curved when dry, lance-shaped, narrowing steadily to a subula, 2-4 mm in length; margins upright, smooth (FNA 2007), often finely saw-toothed apically (Lawton 1971); costa extending slightly beyond the apex (Crum & Anderson et al. 1981).

Leaf Cells: Margins sometimes with 2 cell layers above; alar cells steadily increasing in size; basal laminal cells somewhat long, smooth, porose; upper laminal cells nearly square to short-rectangular, with papillae on the abaxial face; costa with stereid cells scarcely different from the guide cells (FNA 2007).

Diagnostic Characteristics
K. blyttii differs from K. starkei with its spreading, deeper green to brownish leaves that are not shiny and smooth capsules. K. starkei usually has curved, green or yellow leaves, which are most often glossy, and conspicuously ribbed capsules when dry. They also differ in placement of the perigonia (FNA 2007).

K. falcata grows in more crowded patches than K. blyttii and has falcate leaves turned to one side (FNA 2007).

Species Range

Range Comments
North American Range

AK to NT, BC and AB s to CA and ID, ON to NL and NS, also NY, NH and ME (FNA 2007). Known in Montana from Flathead and Park Counties (Elliott & Pipp 2016).

Summary of Observations Submitted for Montana
Number of Observations: 1

(Click on the following maps and charts to see full sized version) Map Help and Descriptions
Relative Density



(Observations spanning multiple months or years are excluded from time charts)

Soil in stone crevices or noncalcareous stone (FNA 2007), possibly always on noncalcareous substrates (Crum & Anderson et al. 1981); high elevations (FNA 2007).

Reproductive Characteristics
Autoicous, the perigonia spaced much lower than the perichaetia or at the top of different branches (FNA 2007). Seta 4-8 mm tall (Lawton 1971), single. Capsule bowed and nearly vertical, not distinctly grooved when dry (FNA 2007) but may be creased (Lawton 1971); theca 1-1.2 mm in length; peristome with 16 2-lobed teeth, the lobes reaching to mid-tooth, russet, with papillae or longitudinal grooves or pores. Calyptra like a draping hood (FNA 2007).

  • Literature Cited AboveLegend:   View Online Publication
    • Crum, H.A. and L.E. Anderson. 1981. Mosses of Eastern North America. 2 volumes. Columbia University Press, New York. 1328 pp.
    • Elliott, J. and A. Pipp. 2016 (forthcoming). Checklist of Montana Mosses. Revised 2016. Prepared by the Montana Natural Heritage Program, Helena, Montana. 90 pp.
    • Flora of North America Editorial Committee, eds. 2007. Flora of North America North of Mexico. Volume 27. Bryophytes: Mosses, Part 1. Oxford University Press, Inc., NY. xxi + 713 pp.
    • Lawton, E. 1971. Moss Flora of the Pacific Northwest. Hattori Botanical Laboratory. Japan: Yamabuki-cho, Shinjuku-ku, Tokyo. 362 pages plus appendices.
  • Additional ReferencesLegend:   View Online Publication
    Do you know of a citation we're missing?
    • Lawton, E. 1971. Keys for the Identification of the Mosses on the Pacific Northwest. Reprinted from 'Moss Flora of the Pacific Northwest'. Published as Supplement No. 2 of the Journal of the Hattori Botanical Laboratory. Nichinan, Miyazaki, Japan. 66 pp.
    • Malcolm, B., N. Malcolm, J. Shevock, and D. Norris. 2009. California Mosses. Nelson, New Zealand: Micro-Optics Press. 430 pp.
    • Smith, A.J.E. 1980. The Moss Flora of Britain and Ireland. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge. 705 pp.
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Citation for data on this website:
Blytt's Kiaeria Moss — Kiaeria blyttii.  Montana Field Guide.  .  Retrieved on , from