Bryophyte flora of Mt. Matutum protected landscape, South Cotabato, Philippines
By: Andrea G. Azuelo, Alven A. Manual, Christine Dawn G. Obemio, Edna P. Oconer, Renan B. Gubalane, Gerald G. Lobredo
Key Words: Bryophyte taxa, Conservation strategy, Endemic, Species richness.
J. Bio. Env. Sci. 9(3), 1-12, September 2016.
An inventory of Mt. Matutum’s bryophyte flora as to its species richness and composition on the three vegetation types namely: lowland (mixed dipterocarp), montane and mossy forests was conducted. A floristic survey through alpha taxonomy was employed by recording all the species within the study area. The bryophytes were collected through alpha taxonomy and sampling plots. Site validations were employed to establish two sample plots with a 20×20 m quadrat in each vegetation type. Each species was classified, identified and described according to its diagnostic characters using field lens and microscopy examinations. Findings of the study revealed a total of 185 species, 70 genera, and 35 families. There are 129 species of mosses belonging to 48 genera and 23 families. The liverwort showed 43 species, 19 genera, and 11 families. Three species belonging to 3 genera and one family were noted for the hornworts. Four endemic species namely: Ectropothecium ferrugineum (C. Mull.) Jaeg., Symphysodontella subulata Broth., Thuidium benguetense Broth ex. Bartr., Leucobryum bowringii Mitt., On the species currently listed, Leucobryum bowringii Mitt. was evaluated as endangered. Two species of mosses namely: Pogonatum macrophyllum (Dozy & Molk.) Lindb. and Leucobryum arfakianum C. Mull. Ex. Geh. had shown uniqueness in their morphology and distribution, and clearly showed that their life forms are adaptations to special ecological niches and reflect habitats. Three species of mosses were found as new record in Mt. Matutum such as Neolindbergia rugosa (Lindb.) Fleisch., Bescherellia cryphaeoides (C. Müll.) Fleisch., and Aerobryopsis sp. Further research is essential in monitoring several important species and providing baseline information on its distribution and taxonomic classification.