A fern species from Sinharaja, Sri Lanka

fern sp 1d-2.jpg Fern sp1e-0.jpg fern sp 1f-1.jpg

I thnk my previous attempt at this posting failed.  I have been a member of BPS for many years. I recently had the privilege and pleasure of visiting Sri Lanka where I was very impressed by the great diversity of ferns and related species. Although there is a checklist available on line I have no literature on the fern flora. I have managed to identify a few species but have others for which I would be very grateful for help in identification if at all possible. This species was photographed in the Sinharaja Reserve, Sri Lanka on 25th February 2019. Many thanks Alan Outen

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6 thoughts on “A fern species from Sinharaja, Sri Lanka”

  1. I think that this is Cyathea walkerae. I saw this last year on the Knuckles ranges. It is a native fern and widespread in the island. I may have some growing from spores, though they look awfully like Macrothelypteris torresiana, which gets everywhere.

  2. Many thanks Peter for this and all your help. I had not realised that Cyathea species will produce spores when still so young, but that probably just reflects my ignorance!

  3. Yes, Peter is correct. It is Cyathea walkerae which is endemic to Sri Lanka. I also have seen some individual which produce spores in very young stage. I did my PhD on diversity and ecology of Sri Lankan Tree ferns.

  4. There aren’t any good illustrated guides to the ferns of Sri Lanka. I have used Volume 15 parts A&B of ‘A Revised Handbook to the Flora of Ceylon – Ferns and Fern Allies’ edited by Monica Shaffer-Fehre. Unfortunately this is not illustrated and I have cross referenced this to RH Beddome’s Ferns of British India 1883, which has lots of good line drawings. Of course, a lot of the nomenclature has changed and you need to know a bit about those changes and also use your imagination. I’ve also used the internet and some text books on the ferns of Malaysia and South India. The Dilmah Tea Company have produced some excellent illustrated natural history guidebooks and it would be good if they sponsored one on ferns of Sri Lanka. I have only just found the facebook page that Andrew referred you to and I’ll see if I can identify any of the mystery ferns there.

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