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High altitude Antarctic soil propagule bank yields an exotic moss and potential colonist

Smith, Ronald I. Lewis; Ochyra, Ryszard. 2006 High altitude Antarctic soil propagule bank yields an exotic moss and potential colonist. Journal of the Hattori Botanical Laboratory (100). 325-331.

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Abstract/Summary

Soil samples from the summit of Coulman Island in northern Victoria Land, continental Antarctica (lat. 73o28'S, 169o45'E) were cultured and after nine weeks they have yeilded sterile shoots of a funarialean moss. Its identity is discussed and, on the basis of the leaf shape, it is determined, with some reservations, as Entosthodon subnudus (Taylor) Fife, a species native to the Australia-New Zealand biogeographical province. This example provides further evidence of the existence of soil propagule banks, sometimes containing taxa not known in the flora of the Antarctic biome. Because of the severity of the polar climate and permanently frigid dry desert conditions, many such propagules may never succeed in growing in situ. The occurrence of E. subnudus represents the highest elevation (2930m) at which a viable plant propagule has been recorded in Antarctica.

Item Type: Publication - Article
Programmes: BAS Programmes > Antarctic Science in the Global Context (2000-2005) > Life at the Edge - Stresses and Thresholds
ISSN: 0073-0912
Format Availability: Print
Additional Information. Not used in RCUK Gateway to Research.: Full text not available from this repository
Additional Keywords: Moss banks
NORA Subject Terms: Botany
Date made live: 27 Jul 2007 10:15
URI: http://nora.nerc.ac.uk/id/eprint/129

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