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Neomacounia nitida
Conservation status
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Plantae
Division: Bryophyta
Class: Bryopsida
Subclass: Bryidae
Order: Hypnales
Family: Neckeraceae
Genus: Neomacounia
Ireland, 1974
Species: N. nitida
Binomial name
Neomacounia nitida
Lindb. 1869

Macoun's Shining Moss (Neomacounia nitida) is an extinct moss that was found only in a small area of Ontario.


Macoun's Shining Moss was a large bryophyte with long greenish-brown tufts. The tufts were shiny and up to 6 cm long. The moss was hermaphroditic and capable of fertilizing itself.

The plant was an epiphyte. It lived near the base of tree trunks of various species of elm and cedar that grew in swampy areas. The only known location where this species occurred was in three locales near Belleville, Ontario. [1]



The species was originally described as Forsstroemia nitida. In 1974, it was reclassified in the monotypic genus Neomacounia. Not all bryologists accept that it is in a monotypic genus, or that it should be placed in the family Neckeraceae. Most recent publications accept the current classification of Macoun's Shining Moss.[1] The common name honours John Macoun.


The area where the samples were found was clear-cut between 1864 and 1892, implying that the species went extinct due to habitat loss during that time. Searches and surveys looking for the species were conducted in 1972 and 2001. They failed to find any evidence for the species' continued existence.[1]

This species is the only known endemic Canadian plant to go extinct since the 1500s.[2]


All known samples of N. nitida were from three collections taken between 1862 and 1864. At least two of the collections were made by John Macoun. As Macoun had mislabelled other samples before, some doubt exists about where they were taken from.[1]

See also


  1. ^ a b c d Macoun's Shining Moss factsheet accessed October 16, 2006
  2. ^ Extinct organisms on the Species at Risk Act accessed October 16, 2006

External links


Up to date as of January 23, 2010

From Wikispecies


Main Page
Cladus: Eukaryota
Regnum: Plantae
Divisio: Bryophyta
Classis: Bryopsida
Subclassis: Bryidae
Superordo: Hypnanae
Ordo: Hypnales
Familia: Neckeraceae
Genus: Neomacounia
Species: Neomacounia nitida


Neomacounia nitida (Lindb.) Irel.

Vernacular names


USDA, NRCS. 2006. The PLANTS Database, 6 March 2006 ( Data compiled from various sources by Mark W. Skinner. National Plant Data Center, Baton Rouge, LA 70874-4490 USA.


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