Schultze-Motel (1982) feels that "tropical Bryology is in a state of crisis" and Touw (1974) described the situation as follows: "At present we are confronted with Augean stables full of never tested exotic species. It is our most urgent task to clean these stables by means of herbarium taxonomic revisions" (c.f., Schultze-Motel, 1982). Several recent floristic efforts are underway in the tropics, especially in the Neotropics, e.g., the West Indies (Buck, 1990), Central America (Allen et al., 1994), Ecuador and Colombia (Churchill, 1994; Churchill and Linares, 1995); as well as the Flora Neotropica series for bryophytes (New York Botanical Garden, S.R. Gradstein, Editor) Furthermore, a few monographs or revisions of primarily tropical groups have been produced (e.g., Welch, 1966; Crosby, 1969; Touw, 1971; Frahm, 1975; Nowak, 1980; Shaw, 1982; Yamaguchi, 1993; Zomlefer, 1993), again with a bias towards the Neotropics.

Whittier and Whittier (1987) report that: "1) floristic exploration [of the paleotropics] remains far [italics theirs] from complete, and becomes increasingly urgent with explosive population growth and housing development with concomitant agricultural/forestry expansion; that 2) further monographic research is acutely needed to resolve nomenclatural, systematic and biogeographic problems ..."Although many authors have done and continue to do pivotal work on paleotropical bryology (e.g., Norris and Koponen, 1985a-b; 1987; Norris et al., 1988; Menzel and Schultze-Motel, 1990; Nowak, 1980; Miller et al., 1963; 1978; Reese et al. 1986a-b; Touw, 1971; 1974; 1978; 1992), understanding of the bryo-flora for the paleotropics remains incomplete. Clearly more explorations, collections, and extensive analyses which result in systematic monographs and robust phylogenies are needed.

To Next Section: Selection of Study Group

Return to Mishler PEET Home Page

Return to Mishler Lab Home Page