This introductory bryophytes course is a great place to start for those taking their first steps into the world of mosses, liverworts and hornworts.

Have you ever wondered what makes up the bright green carpets on rocks and trees? If you take a closer look, a diverse and prehistoric world is revealed. With over half of all European moss, liverwort and hornwort species present in the UK, there is so much to explore!

During this course, will gain a better understanding of this diverse group, all under the guidance of an engaging and knowledgeable expert in the field. You will learn about their biology and ecology and have ample time to explore your surrounding environment to find some specimens, learning valuable observational field identification tips.

Your course takes place on a 12-hectare estate, surrounded by a rich range of habitats, including the River Severn and semi-ancient woodland, set in the heart of Shropshire with views disappearing into Wales.

PLEASE NOTE: the course fee is for tuition only. There is no accommodation provided with this course. If you would like to book accommodation, lunch and an evening meal at FSC Preston Montford, please email [email protected]

Bookings will close if course capacity is reached

If you’re interested in finding out more about mosses, liverworts and hornworts but don’t feel quite ready for a specific field ID course, then this is the course for you!

Who Should Attend?

Nature enthusiasts, Students, Rangers, Early career consultants and ecologists.

Knowledge Level

Introductory. Level descriptors can be found on the following webpage:Framework and Course Level Descriptors

Prior Knowledge

No existing knowledge, or experience is needed for this course. Just a willingness to explore and learn.

What will be covered during this course?

    • An introduction to bryophyte biology
    • An introduction to bryophyte ecology
    • An overview of the species diversity within the UK
      Please note that this course is NOT a species identification course

By the end of the course, you will be able to:

    • Describe which groups of organisms are classified as bryophytes and what makes them different from all other plants
    • Understand the basics of bryophyte lifecycles and reproductive strategies and structures
    • Describe bryophyte habitats and their environmental conditions
    • Recognise groups of common bryophytes in their natural environments
    • Share this knowledge with friends, family, and fellow volunteers.

This is a place-based training course from the Field Studies Council, including a balance of classroom-led learning to impart important knowledge and irreplaceable hands-on outdoor learning opportunities to give individuals skills and confidence. After attending this course, you may like to progress your learning with further relevant courses or branch out into other areas of natural history. The Field Studies Council offers both online and in person courses, so you can choose the learning style that suits you best.

The course gives you the opportunity to immerse yourself in a new subject and acquire novel skills. Our fantastic tutor will combine the use of classroom-led learning and outside learning opportunities to give individuals the skills and confidence to progress their learning.

    • See the ‘Example Timetable’ and ‘What’s Included’ sections below for more information about this course.
    • Upon booking you will need to provide individual details of all attendees
    • Please email ec[email protected] if you have any questions.

Group Bookings Made Easy

If you have a group of 10 or more individuals wanting to complete one of our courses, our team are available to discuss your options – from discounts to private team courses.

  • Discounted rates
  • Privately run courses for your group
  • Bespoke courses developed specifically for your needs

Click here to find out more!

If we are unable to reach viable numbers for this course, we will inform you of the course cancellation 14 days prior to the course run. We would recommend when purchasing accommodation and/or travel you should take out your own insurance.

Tutor: Lucia Ruffino

Lucia Ruffino is a bryologist and free-lance botanical surveyor living and working in North Wales. Lucia’s botanical knowledge has developed over the years from an amateur background and she now specialises in NVC surveys in upland and peatland habitats.

Book with Confidence

We understand the difficulties of making plans in the current situation when guidelines continue to change, and insurance conditions are being tightened. In response, we will continue to offer additional flexibility. Find out more here

Example Timetable

Example Timetable

This timetable is subject to change but should give a clear outline of what to expect

    • Please arrive in time for the course to start promptly at 10:00am
    • The course will end at 5:00pm

Day 1

10:00amIntroductions
10:30amClassroom session covering:

  • What are bryophytes
  • Bryophyte biology and ecology
  • Key features of each group
11:30amBreak and prepare for field session – refreshments not provided 
11:45amGuided walk to try to find some species to bring back to the classroom
1:00pmLunch – Not included
2:00pmClassroom session covering:

  • Bryophyte identification and recording
  • Demonstrations of equipment – hand lens and ID Guides.
3:00pmBreak and prepare for field session – refreshments not provided 
3:15pmGuided walk to apply classroom knowledge
4:30pmClassroom plenary and final questions
5:00pmFinish

Please note accommodation and an evening meal is not included

What's Included

  • Expert Tuition

The course has been carefully created by expert tutors and educators to help you continue to build and develop your knowledge and apply it within the field surrounded by like-minded individuals.

The course includes:

  • Classroom learning covering the theory of the species
  • Field excursions to apply new knowledge
  • Expert tuition for which the Field Studies Council is renowned
  • Clear objectives and progression

You can rest assured that the absolute best content from an expert in environmental education will be provided. In choosing a Field Studies Council course, you will be joining thousands of people who learn with us each year.

Reviews

  • ★★★★★

    Excellent (the tutor) was very helpful and provided the guidance needed when starting this area of study.

  • ★★★★★

    Very skilled tutor who is an excellent teacher

Before You Attend

Before you attend:

  • Notebook and pencil
  • Camera to capture images
  • Please bring your own refreshments & pack lunch
  • Sensible footwear and clothing for being outdoors
  • Hand lens (if you have one)

There will be a member of staff with first aid training and access to a first aid kit on site. If you have special medical or access requirements, please let us know as soon as possible so we can plan the course.

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