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A Neckera Moss - Neckera menziesii
Other Names:  Metaneckera menziesii

Native Species

Global Rank: G5
State Rank: SNR

Agency Status


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General Description
Plant: Pleurocarpous (Vitt 1988). Small to large. Green to yellow-green. Stems 5-20 cm long. Branches are usually flagelliform (runner-like stem of small leaves) with simple or branched paraphyllia.

Leaf: Leaves complanate, undulate, lingulate or oblong, and 1.2-3.2 x 0.4-1.2 mm. Apex rounded, but often apiculate. Margins plane or sometimes recurved on side at the base, and serrulate proximally. Costa is strong and extends to beyond mid-leaf.

Leaf Cells: Basal cells long, thick-walled, and pitted. Alar cells quadrate to irregular, with very few pits. Median leaf cells 30-50 x 7-10 ┬Ám, thick-walled, and pitted. Upper leaf cells short, somewhat rhomboidal, less thick-walled, and less pitted. Flagelliform branches with leaves that are less than 1 mm long, ovate-lanceolate, acute to acuminate, not undulate, often not complanate, and with non-pitted cells.

Diagnostic Characteristics
Metaneckera menziesii has numerous paraphyllia whereas the similar Neckera douglasii has none and N. pennata has few to none (Vitt 1988).

Range Comments
Canada: AB, BC, YT; USA: AK, CA, ID, MT, NM, OR, SD, UT, WA; Europe; Asia (China, Japan) (FNA 2014). In Montana, found in Flathead, Granite, Glacier, Lake, Lincoln, Meagher, Missoula, Ravalli, and Sanders Counties (Elliott 2016).

Observations in Montana Natural Heritage Program Database
Number of Observations: 66

(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)

Tree trunks, branches, and sometimes on rock.

Reproductive Characteristics
Dioicous. Seta is 2 mm tall, usually shorter than capsule. Capsule is 1.8-2.5 mm long, brown, oblong-ovoid, larger at the base, and immersed. Calyptra is smooth.

  • Literature Cited AboveLegend:   View Online Publication
    • Elliott, J.C. and A.K. Pipp. 2018. A Checklist of Montana Mosses (1880-2018). Updated 3 January, 2020. Montana Natural Heritage Program, Helena, Montana. 73 pp.
    • Flora of North America Editorial Committee, eds. 2014. Flora of North America North of Mexico. Volume 28. Bryophytes: Mosses, Part 2. Oxford University Press, Inc., NY. xxi + 702 pp.
    • Vitt, D. J. Marsh, and R. Bovey. 1988. Mosses, Lichens & Ferns of Northwest North America. Seattle, WA: University of Washington Press. 296 p.
  • Additional ReferencesLegend:   View Online Publication
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    • Elliot, J. C. 1993. Second checklist of Montana mosses. Unpublished report. U.S. Forest Service, Region 1. Missoula, MT. 45 pp.
    • Flowers, S. 1973. Mosses: Utah and the West. Brigham Young University, Provo, Utah. 567 p.
    • 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.
    • Lawton, E. 1971. Moss Flora of the Pacific Northwest. Hattori Botanical Laboratory. Japan: Yamabuki-cho, Shinjuku-ku, Tokyo. 362 pages plus appendices.
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Citation for data on this website:
A Neckera Moss — Neckera menziesii.  Montana Field Guide.  .  Retrieved on , from