The Hawaiian moss flora is comprised primarily of tropical species. Being an island chain most distant from other continental land masses, all of the plants in Hawai'i had to initially arrive by long distance dispersal. The Hawaiian moss flora is based on a 1933 publication with a revised species checklist in 2004. Some of the names applied to Hawaiian mosses are in error and one of our goals is to determine the correct names for the species on this island. The number of historic moss collections obtained from Kaua'i is considerably less than in neighboring O'ahu. To date we have made over 600 moss collections from Kaua'i.
This project to revise the moss flora of Kaua'i is being implemented in partnership between CAS and the National Tropical Botanic Garden (PTBG), Kalaheo, Kaua'i. To date three expeditions have been completed that yielding several mosses new for the island and a few mosses new for the Hawaiian Islands. The steep mountainous terrain of Kaua'i along with limited roads and trails requires access to remote forest reserves by 4 person helicopters which increases the cost to conduct surveys.