Moss Hunting in the Andes

UNLV doctoral student, Theresa Clark, recently traveled to Argentina to co-instruct a biocrust outreach workshop. While on a field trip she did some moss hunting and spotted a species of Syntrichia high in the Andes Mountains! This population was looking rather stressed (red leaf tissue), perhaps from recent frost-desiccation events, or perhaps from over-exposure to radiation during unexpected decreases in winter snow pack, which leaves these cushions exposed to additional solar radiation when they would otherwise be protected under at least a thin layer of snow during the winter.