Specimens for these studies will be acquired in two ways. In undercollected areas we will make new collections. In regions where a good density of collections have been made, we will largely use existing herbarium materials, except for fresh materials needed for molecular and culture studies, and for a few localities where detailed ecological studies will be carried out (see below). The majority of recent collections of the family are in the herbaria of W.D. Reese (LAF), H, Mohamed (KLU), and D. Norris (UC and H), all of whom are collaborators on this proposal and who will make available their specimens and assist students in their study. Other important herbaria will be visited and/or loans requested, including FH (important collections of Bartram, Sullivant and others - the PI was a graduate student at FH and has a very good knowledge of the collections there), MU (where H.A. Miller's rich Pacific herbarium is now located), BISH, CBG, NY, MO, US, ALTA, H, S, BM, PC, and others. Permanent slides will be made, and complete information will be kept on specimens examined, in Microsoft Excel.

We will do field work in selected places across the Pacific and in Southeastern Asia. All requisite collecting permits will be obtained (we already have a research permit for French Polynesia, where the inital work will occur). Specimens will be collected from across the ecological range of the family, both herbarium vouchers for morphological studies, and associated plants for DNA extraction and starting cultures. A GPS device (already owned by the University Herbarium) will be used to assign coordinates to all new specimens. Geographic Information Systems (such as ArcView) can then be used to store and map distirbutional information.

The genus Mitthyridium is distributed across the paleotropics from Africa through the South Pacific. Fieldwork in the eastern part of the range will be facilitated by our access to the UC Berkeley Gump Research Station on Moorea in the Society Islands. Mishler is a frequent visitor there, and has a good knowledge of the moss flora, resources, and terrain. Field work to the western part of the range will likewise be facilitated by our collaboration with Dr. Haji Mohamed at the University of Malaysia, Kuala Lumpur. Because Malaysia is in the center of diversity for this group, Wall will spend an extended period of time there carrying out detailed observations of the microdistribution of the different species in relation to various ecological factors. Similar intensive field studies will be undertaken by the second graduate student, once he/she has chosen and defined a specific subgroup of the family.

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