J Syst Evol ›› 2016, Vol. 54 ›› Issue (6): 626-637.DOI: 10.1111/jse.12213

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What do we know about Hawaiian ferns and lycophytes?

Tom A. Ranker*   

  1. Department of Botany, University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa, Honolulu, HI 96822, USA
  • Received:2016-04-18 Published:2016-12-15

Abstract: The Hawaiian Islands are home to one of the most distinctive fern and lycophyte floras in the world. Of the 144 native fern species, 76% are endemic and, including subspecies and varieties, 84% of the 167 native fern taxa are endemic. There are 15 native lycophyte species, 47% of which are endemic, and 16 taxa, 50% of which are endemic. I review here most of the available literature on Hawaiian ferns and lycophytes. Few species of ferns or lycophytes have been studied in any kind of detail and, for most, we only know basic classification and general ecological information. Although the total number of studies reviewed here is not large, research has been conducted on a wide range of topics including systematics, floristics, dispersal, phylogeny, biogeography, ecology, form and function, population genetics, microevolution, fern-animal and fern-fungi associations, reproductive biology, demography, ethnobotany, and conservation.

Key words: ferns, Hawaiian Islands, lycophytes