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Published In: Journal of Botany, British and Foreign 19: 14. 1881. (J. Bot.) Name publication detailView in BotanicusView in Biodiversity Heritage Library

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Scopelophila ligulata has rounded to obtuse leaves with entire to lightly crenulate leaf margins that are often differentiated as a band of thick-walled, yellowish cells, and basal leaf cells that usually becoming dark-red to blackish with age. Although it can usually be separated from S. cataractae on the basis of leaf apex shape and its differentiated leaf margin, the two species are best distinguished by axillary hair length (S. ligulata 2–3 cells long vs S. cataractae 5–6 cells long) and the presence in the costa of S. cataractae of a ventral epidermal layer above the guide cells.

Illustrations: Husnot (1890, Pl. 79) Fleischer (1904, Fig. 56, as Merceya sulfatara); Bartram (1949, Fig. 40 A–E); Noguchi (1956, Pls. 1–3); Zander (1967, Figs. 10–28); Crum and Anderson (1981, Fig. 120); Crum (1983 Fig. 43 e–h); Noguchi (1988, Fig. 136 A); Norris and Koponen (1989, Fig. 17 f–j); (Zander (1993, Pl.47 1–7); Sharp et al. (1994, Fig. 278). Figure 70.
Habitat: Wet cliffs or banks, at times near hot springs; 2300–3800 m.
Distribution in Central America: GUATEMALA. Quezaltenango: Standley 86049 (F, NY). COSTA RICA. Heredia: Valerio s.n. (NY).
World Range: North-Central, Southwestern, and Southeastern U.S.A.; Mexico; Central America; Western South America; Southwestern, Middle, and Southeastern Europe; Russian Far East, Caucasus, China, Eastern and Western Asia; Macaronesia, Northern Africa, West-Central Tropical Africa; Indian Subcontinent, Malesia.


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Scopelophila ligulata (Spruce) Spruce, J. Bot. 10: 14. 1881.

Encalypta ligulata Spruce, Musc. Pyren. 331. 1847. Zygodon ligulatus (Spruce) C. Müll., Syn. Musc. Frond. 2: 636. 1851. Merceya ligulata (Spruce) Schimp., Syn. Musc. Eur. (ed. 2), 852. 1876. Protologue: France. Hab. in rupibus humidis praesertim ophiticis. Labassère. Superbagnères. Gorge de Cauterets, Spruce.

Weissia agoyanensis Mitt., J. Linn. Soc., Bot. 12: 135. 1869.  Hyophila agoyanensis (Mitt.) Jaeg., Ber. Thätigk. St. Gallischen Naturwiss. Ges. 1871–72: 358. 1873. Scopelophila agoyanensis (Mitt.) Spruce, J. Bot. 10: 12. 1881. Merceya agoyanensis (Mitt.) C. Müll., Gen. Musc. Frond. 383. 1901 [1900]. Protologue: Ecuador. Andes Quitenses, in scopulis humidas supra cataractam Agoyan fluv. Pastasae (5000 ped.) Spruce, n. 45 a (lectotype Zander 1967) et b.

Plants small to medium-sized, caespitose, green to brownish green below, brownish black below, saxicolous or terricolous. Stems 5–30 mm high, irregularly branched, central strand absent, cortical cells thin-walled, hyaline, uniform throughout; rhizoids scattered on stem, smooth or verucose. Axillary hairs 2–3 cells long, lower 1–2 cells brown. Leaves 1.2–5.0 mm long, ligulate, lingulate, oblong or spathulate, erect to spreading at base, keeled, flexuose when dry, erect-spreading when wet, weakly decurrent; apices rounded-obtuse, at times acute; margins entire or lightly crenulate, plane above, recurved at base, often with a border of thicker-walled, yellowish cells; costa narrow, subpercurrent, surface cells oblong, smooth on both surfaces, guide cells and a single (dorsal) stereid band well-developed, ventral surface layer of enlarged cells absent, the guide cells exposed on the ventral surface; upper cells rounded-quadrate, oblate, or hexagonal, 6–16 x 8–16 μm, firm-walled, somewhat bulging and smooth on both sides, basal cells rectangular, thin-walled, smooth, 26–120 x 12–30 μm, bulging the walls at times deep red to black, alar cells not differentiated. Dioicous. Perichaetia and perigonia terminal. Setae smooth, 4–6 mm long, yellowish brown. Capsules short-cylindrical, erect, 1.5–2.0 mm long, smooth, yellowish brown; exothecial cells quadrate to rectangular, thin-walled; stomata in neck; opercula rostrate, beak erect, 0.6–1.0 mm long; annuli persistent 2–3 rows of cells, clinging to the capsule mouth or operculum after dehiscence; peristome absent. Spores 10–14 μm, granulate. Calyptra not seen.



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