ISSN 1188-603X

No. 273 September 25, 2001 Victoria, B.C.
Dr. A. Ceska, P.O.Box 8546, Victoria, B.C. Canada V8W 3S2



What is the Ramsar Convention?

Convention on Wetlands of International Importance, also known as the Ramsar Convention , was named after the city in Iran where the text was first adopted in 1971 through the cooperation of 18 nations. The Convention is an intergovernmental treaty that provides the framework for international cooperation for the conservation of the World's wetland habitats. As of May 1999, 114 nation states comprise the Contracting Parties to the Convention worldwide. Numerous observer organizations and non-contracting nations also play an indirect role in the business of the Convention. Canada became a Contracting Party to the Ramsar Convention in 1981. Contracting Parties to the Convention have recognized that wetlands are essential not only for hydrological and ecological processes but also for the rich fauna and flora they support as well as for human activities. The Convention's objectives focus on stemming the loss of wetlands and ensuring their conservation and sustainable wise use for future generations.

As of May 1999, 36 Ramsar sites have been designated under the Ramsar Convention in Canada. These sites are found in all of Canada's provinces and territories and cover a surface area, in total, of over 13 million hectares of designated wetlands and associated uplands. Most of these sites are described in the publication Wetlands for the World: Canada's Ramsar Sites. Canada's 36 sites represent close to 20% of the wetland area designated world-wide under the Convention to date.

Where are Canada's Ramsar Sites?

Site/Location Year Established Area (ha)

For more information on these sites see


From: Adolf Ceska []
Dierssen, K. 2001.
Distribution, ecological amplitude and phytosociological characterization of European bryophytes. Bryophytorum Bibliotheca, Band 56. J. Cramer in Gebrueder Borntraeger, Berlin-Stuttgart. 289 p. ISBN 3-443-62028-0 [softcover] Price DM 140.00.

Available from:
Gebr. Borntraeger Verlagsbuchhandlung
Johannesstr. 3 A
D-70176 Stuttgart
Germany e-mail:

In this compendium, Prof. Klaus Dierssen (University of Kiel, Germany) listed geographical distribution, ecological characteristics and phytosociological preferences of about 1,150 mosses and about 450 liverworts that occur in Europe and in Macaronesia (Azores, Canary Islands, Madeira, and Capo Verde).

"Geographical distribution" is expressed by the formula developed by Meusel et al. ("Vergleichende Chorologie der zentraleuropaeischen Flora") and widely adopted in Central-European botanical literature (e.g., in a simplified form in Rothmaler's "Exkursionsflora"). Threat categories follow the IUCN threat classification and are given for all taxa, except those which are not threatened.

The section on "Ecological amplitude" gives preferences of each individual species for acidity, nutrient availability, pollution, humidity, heat balance, light, substrate, and human impact. Preferred habitats are summarized in one or more lines of a "free language" description (e.g., "usually on decaying organic matter, most frequently on rotting tree stumps, occasionally on old grass tussocks, on the border of peat diggings and regionally on sandstone" for Aulacomnium androgynum). The "Life strategy category," equivalent to "life forms" in vascular plants, is also listed for each species.

Under "phytosociological characterization" the author lists occurrences of each bryophyte species in bryophyte and vascular plant communities. In this part, he refers to two classifications presented in the introduction, one on the bryophyte communities of Europe and the other on the "European vegetation types more or less rich in bryophytes".

Over 28 pages of "Consulted literature" list about 600 bryological and phytosociological publications.

Dr. Klaus Dierssen started his academic career as a student of Prof. Reinhold Tuexen (a prominent Central European guru of plant sociology). He also spent some time at the University of Freiburg, where he met Prof. Otti Wilmanns (a phytosociologist who focused on bryophytes) and Prof. Erich Oberdorfer (who produced the first classical synthesis of South-German plant communities). In fact, I feel that Oberdorfer's "Pflanzensoziologische Exkursionsflora" was the great inspiration to Klaus Dierssen in producing this excellent summary of ecological requirements and indicator values of bryophytes.

This is a unique book that contains plenty of useful information on mosses and liverworts of Europe. Since many species treated in this book have wider distribution or are circumpolar, this book will find an attentive audience outside Europe. In North America it will be welcomed by bryologists, plant ecologists, and everyone who is interested in vegetation and its bryophyte component.

For other titles in the Bryophytorum Bibliotheca series see:


From: Karen Golinski [] and Adolf Ceska []

[Dr. A.W.H. (Ton) Damman died in his sleep on December 27, 2000 (BEN 263, January 16, 2001). In that issue I had promised to post his bibliography in the next issue, but the compilation of this bibliography took much longer than expected. - AC]
Damman, A.W.H. & D.M. de Vries. 1954.
Testing of grassland associations by combinations of species. Biol. Jaarb. (Dodonaea), Antwerp 21: 35-46.
Damman, A.W.H. 1957.
The South-Swedish Calluna-heath and its relation to the Calluneto-Genistetum. Botaniska Notiser 110(3): 363-398.
Damman, A.W.H. 1962.
Development of hydromorphic humus podzols and some notes on the classification of podzols in general. J. Soil Sci. 13: 92-97.
Damman, A.W.H. 1963.
Key to the Carex species of Newfoundland by vegetative characteristics. Dept. of Forestry publication no. 1017. Queen's Printer, Ottawa. 39 p.
Damman, A.W.H. 1964.
Some forest types of central Newfoundland and their relation to environmental factors. Forest Science Monograph No. 8: 1-62. [Reprints issued as the Forest Research Branch Contribution No. 596, Department of Forestry, Ottawa]
Damman, A.W.H. 1965.
The distribution patterns of northern and southern elements in the flora of Newfoundland. Rhodora 67: 363-392.
Damman, A.W.H. 1965.
Thin iron pans: Their occurrence and the conditions leading to their development. Canada Dept. Forestry, Inform. Rep. N-X-2. 14 p.
Damman, A.W.H. 1967.
The Forest Vegetation of Western Newfoundland and Site Degradation Associated with Vegetation Change. Ph.D. Thesis. University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, Michigan. 319 p.
McKeague, J.A., A.W.H. Damman, & P.K. Heringa. 1968.
Iron-manganese and other pans in some soils of Newfoundland. Can. J. Soil Sci. 48: 243-253.
Damman, A.W.H. 1971.
Effect of vegetation changes on the fertility of a Newfoundland forest site. Ecological Monographs 41: 253-270.
Damman, A.W.H. 1975.
Permanent changes in the chronosequence of a boreal forest habitat induced by natural disturbances. Pp. 499-515 in Schmidt, W. [ed.] Sukzessionsforschung : (Rinteln, 16.-19. 4. 1973) - Berichte der internationalen Symposien der Internationalen Vereinigung fuer Vegetationskunde. J. Cramer, Vaduz. 622 p.
Damman, A.W.H. 1976.
Plant distribution in Newfoundland especially in relation to summer temperatures measured with the sucrose inversion method. Canadian Journal of Botany 54: 1561-1585.
Damman, A.W.H. 1977.
Geographical changes in the vegetation pattern of raised bogs in the Bay of Fundy region of Maine and New Brunswick. Vegetatio 35 (3): 137-151.
Damman, A.W.H. 1978.
Distribution and movement of elements in ombrotrophic peat bogs. Oikos 30: 480-495.
Damman, A.W.H. 1979.
Amphi-Atlantic correlations in the Oxycocco-Sphagnetea: a critical evaluation. Documents Phytosociologiques N.S. (Lille) 4: 187-195.
Damman, A.W.H. 1979.
Geographic patterns in peatland development in eastern North America. Pp. 42-57 in: Kivinen, E., L. Heikurainen, and P. Pakarinen [eds.] Symposium on Classification of Peat and Peatlands, Hyytiala, Finland, September 17-21, 1979. International Peat Society, 367 p.
Damman, A.W.H. 1979.
Mobilization and Accumulation of Heavy Metals in Freshwater Wetlands. U.S. Dept. Inter. Rep. OWRT Project A-073-CONN. 14 pp.
Damman, A.W.H. 1980.
Ecological and floristic trends in ombrotrophic bogs of eastern North America. Pp. 61-79 in: J.M. Gehu (ed.). La vegetation des sols tourbeux. Lille -1978. Colloques Phytosociologiques, VII. J. Cramer, Vaduz [Liechtenstein]. 494 p.
Damman, A.W.H., and J.J. Dowhan. 1981.
Vegetation and habitat condition in Western Head Bog, a southern Nova Scotian plateau bog. Canadian Journal of Botany 59: 1343-1359.
Damman, A.W.H. 1983.
An ecological subdivision of the island of Newfoundland. Pp. 163-206 in: South G.R. [ed.] Biogeography and Ecology of the Island of Newfoundland. Monographiae biologicae v. 48. Dr. W. Junk Publishers, The Hague. 723 p.
Metzler, K.J. & A.W.H. Damman. 1985.
Vegetation patterns in the Connecticut River flood plain in relation to frequency and duration of flooding. Naturaliste canadien, Quebec 112: 535-547.
Damman, A.W.H. 1986.
Hydrology, development and biogeochemistry of ombrogenous peat bogs with special reference to nutrient relocation in a western Newfoundland bog. Canadian Journal of Botany 64: 384-394.
Damman, A.W.H. 1987.
Variation in ombrotrophy: chemical differences among and within ombrotrophic bogs. Pp. 85-93 in: C.D.A Rubec & R.P. Overend [eds.] Proceedings: Symposium 1987 Wetlands/ Peatlands, August 23-27, Edmonton, Alberta.
Damman, A.W.H. & French, T.W. 1987. The ecology of peat bogs of the glaciated northeastern United States: a community profile. U.S. Fish & Wildlife Serv. Biol. Rep. 85(7.16) 100 p.
Damman, A.W.H. 1988.
Regulation of nitrogen removal and retention in Sphagnum bogs and other peatlands. Oikos 51: 291-305.
Damman, A.W.H. 1988.
Spatial and seasonal changes in water chemistry and vegetation in an ombrogenous bog. Pp. 107-119 in: Verhoeven, J.T.A., G.W. Heil, & M.J.A. Werger [eds.] Vegetation Structure in Relation to Carbon and Nutrient Economy. SPB Academic Publishing, The Hague, The Netherlands.
Damman, A.W.H. 1990.
Nutrient status of ombrotrophic peat bogs. Aquilo Ser Bot. 28: 5-14.
Johnson, L.C., A.W.H. Damman, & N. Malmer. 1990. Sphagnum macrostructure as an indicator of decay and compaction in peat cores from an ombrotrophic south Swedish peat-bog. J. Ecol. 78: 633-647.
Benoit, J.M., A.W.H. Damman, & W.F. Fitzgerald. 1991.
Mercury distribution and depositional fluxes in an ombrotrophic peat bog in Minnesota. Abstracts, The Biogeochemistry of Wetlands Symposium, Louisiana State University. February 10-13, 1991, Baton Rouge, LA.
Johnson, L.C. & A.W.H. Damman. 1991.
Species-regulated decay in bog, fen and ash forest in northern Maine. [Abstract] Bull. Ecol. Soc. Amer. 72 (2 Suppl.): 156.
Johnson, L.C. & A.W.H. Damman. 1991.
Species-controlled Sphagnum decay on a south Swedish raised bog. Oikos 61: 234-242.
Benoit, J.M., W.F. Fitzgerald, & A.W.H. Damman. 1992.
Historical atmospheric mercury distribution in the mid-continental U.S. as recorded in an ombrotrophic peat bog. Abstracts 2nd International Conference on Mercury as a Global Pollutant. May 31-June 4, 1992, Monterey, CA.
Tolonen, K., H. Vasander, A.W.H. Damman, & R.S. Clymo. 1992.
Rate of apparent and true carbon accumulation in boreal peatlands. Proceedings of the 9th International Peat Congress, Uppsala, Sweden, 22-26 June 1992, Vol. 1: 319-333.
Damman, A.W.H., K. Tolonen, & T. Sallantaus. 1993.
Element retention and removal in ombrotrophic peat of Haadetkeidas, a boreal Finnish peat bog. Suo, Helsinki 43("1992"): 137-145.
Tolonen, K., H. Vasander, A.W.H. Damman, & R.S. Clymo. 1993.
Preliminary estimate of long-term carbon accumulation and loss in 25 boreal peatlands. Suo, Helsinki 43("1992"): 277-280.
Johnson, L.C. & A.W.H. Damman. 1993.
Decay and its regulation in Sphagnum peatlands. Advances in Bryology 5: 249-296.
Benoit, J.M., W.F. Fitzgerald, & A.W.H. Damman. 1994.
Historical atmospheric mercury deposition in the mid-continental United States as recorded in an ombrotrophic peat bog. Pp. 187-202 in: C.J. Watras & J.W. Huckabee [eds.] Mercury pollution: integration and synthesis. Lewis Press, Boca Raton, FL. 727 p.
Damman, A.W.H. 1995.
Major mire vegetation units in relation to the concepts of ombrotrophy and minerotrophy: a worldwide perspective. Gunneria, Trondheim 70: 23-34. [Note: Gunneria 70:1-344 is a collection of papers on "Regional variation and conservation of mire ecosystems" submitted to the International Mire Conservation Group, edited by A. Moen and published by the University of Trondheim, Norway.]
Damman, A.W.H. 1995.
Boreal peatlands in Norway and eastern North America: a comparison. Gunneria, Trondheim 70: 43-65.
Damman, A.W.H. 1996.
Peat accumulation in fens and bogs: effects of hydrology and fertility. Pp. 213-222 in: Laiho, R. et al. (eds.) Northern peatlands in global climate change. Proceedings of the International Workshop, October 8-12, 1995, Hyytiala, Finland. Publications of the Academy of Finland 1/96, Helsinki. 314 p.
Benoit, J.M., W.F. Fitzgerald, & A.W.H. Damman. 1998.
The biogeochemistry of an ombrotrophic bog: evaluation of use as an archive of atmospheric mercury deposition. Environmental Research, Section A 78: 118-133.
Fitzgerald, W.F., C.H. Lamborg, A.W.H. Damman, J.M. Benoit, & P.H. Balcom. 1999.
Contemporary and Historical Eolian Depositional Fluxes of Mercury: Archival Records In Ombrotrophic Bogs and Lake Sediments From Nova Scotia and New Zealand. Abstracts 5th International Conference on Mercury as a Global Pollutant, Rio de Janeiro Spring, May 23-28, 1999.
Lamborg, C.H., W.F. Fitzgerald, A.W.H. Damman, J.M. Benoit, P.H. Balcom, & D.R. Engstrom. 2000.
Atmospheric Mercury Fluxes As Recorded in Lake Sediments: The Lack of an Historic Global Signal From Au and Ag Mining. Published in the proceedings of the Conference on Assessing and Managing Mercury From Historic and Current Mining Activities (U.S. Environmental Protection Agency). San Francisco, California, November 28-30, 2000.
Fitzgerald, W.F., C.H. Lamborg, C.-M. Tseng, D.R. Engstrom, A.W.H. Damman, J.M. Benoit, & P.H. Balcom. 2001.
Modern and Historic Atmospheric Mercury Fluxes in both Hemispheres: Global and Regional Mercury Cycling Implications. Abstracts, 6th International Conference on Mercury as a Global Pollutant, Minamata, Japan, October 15-19, 2001. (manuscript in preparation with C.H. Lamborg as first author)

Acknowledgements: We would like to thank Drs. Denisa Blazkova, Kendrick Brown, Loretta Johnson, Williams F. Fitzgerald and Pekka Pakarinen for their help with compiling this bibliography.

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