This will be a short course tailored to the needs of those who would like to know more about the ecology, biology and identification of bryophytes. We will be visiting some bryophyte-rich sites near Blencathra, using hand-lenses to identify species in the field and then microscopes back in the classroom to examine specimens more closely.

The course will be a combination of field excursions covering many different habitats and time in the classroom with microscopes and keys. A major aim will be to develop the skills and knowledge which are as necessary for the professional use of this ecologically important group of plants as they are for amateur enjoyment of mosses and liverworts. Emphasis will be placed on field characteristics, backed up by work in the laboratory, including the use of identification keys. There will also be opportunities to concentrate on special interests, as individual guidance will be given at all levels.

Tutor: Nick Hodgetts

Nick Hodgetts is a botanical consultant with 30 years of experience as a bryologist. He has a background in the voluntary and statutory conservation sectors and is now self-employed and based in the Isle of Skye.

What's Included

  • Expert Tuition
  • Free Wi-Fi
  • Full Board Accommodation
  • Hot and Cold Drinks
  • In Course Transport

Before You Attend

What to Bring

  • Lunch box, vacuum flask
  • Wellingtons and or waterproof walking boots
  • Plenty of spare warm waterproof clothing
  • Fine Forceps (blunt-ended tweezers are not suitable)
  • Fine scalpel (e.g. Swan Morton, number 11)
  • Selection of small polythene bags
  • Small notebook and pencil
  • A hand-lens (x10 magnification)
  • Old newspapers (for making moss packets)
  • Rucksack to carry spare clothing and lunch
  • Towels will be provided but do bring toothpaste, soap, shower gel, hairdryer and own

For your own and group safety, Centre staff reserve the right to refuse to take people out on excursions if they are not properly equipped. If you are unsure of the standard of equipment required, please contact us for advice. Please see above information for details of any other
equipment required as suggested by your Course Tutor.
We have wellingtons (but not waders) and waterproofs available at the centre.

Recommended Reading

Handbook of European Sphagna Daniels, R.E & A Eddy (1985) Institute of Terrestrial Ecology.
Moss Flora of Britain and Ireland Smith, A.J.E (2006) (ed 2, reprinted version). Cambridge University Press.
The liverwort flora of the British Isles Paton, J.A. (1999) Harley Books, Colchester.
Mosses and liverworts of Britain and Ireland Atherton, I., Bosanquet, S. & Lawley, M (2010)
A field guide. British Bryological Society.