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tasmanian liverworts - plagiochilacea

plagiochila fasciculata (formerly 111213E)

Plagiochila fasciculata
1. vegetative shoot with details

 

This piggybacked with a Hypopterygium species growing on debris over rocks collected in mixed Nothofagus forest near a waterfall. We had doubts about the identity as this had (3)4-7(8) homogenous oil bodies (pix 5) while several others we had examined had botryoidal clumps. We were relieved to discover in Scott's work that this was not unusual for the genus.

Some of the vegetative tips had reduced leaves (pix 2) which upon examination proved to be antheridial branches with the leaves protecting the male sexual organ (pix 3). We managed to excise one with stalk intact but ruptured it when placing a cover glass over it. There was a lot of movement near the junction of stalk and antheridia which we think were spermatoids swimming around (pix 4). We have not studied this closely but the literature indicates it has paired flagella inserted into the body at different levels.

Plagiochila male branches
2. male branches
Plagiochila antheridia
3. antheridia
Plagiochila sperm
4. sperm
Plagiochila fasciculata cells
5. cells

 

References
- Scott, G.A.M., Southern Australian Liverworts, Australian Flora and Fauna Series #2, 1986 (ISBN 064403632X)

Page URL: http://www.bluetier.org/Liverwort/plagiochila-fasciculata.htm

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111218-1, 1, 16, 199, 312