Atlantic Mountain Wetlands

In the Itatiaia Mountain Range most of the bogs are dominated by graminoids but usually have a ground layer of Sphagnum moss. In the wettest areas the upper layer is typically dominated by Cladium ensifolium, but when slightly dryer conditions prevail the endemic grass Cortaderia modesta (Poaceae) usually becomes the main species. Associated species include Alstroemeria isabellana, Blechnum schomburgkii, Polystichum quadrangulare and Rhabdocaulon coccineus. The many small swamps are also largely dominated by graminoides particularly of the genera Bulbostylis and Fimbristylis. Sphagnum again dominates the lower stratum but small plants such as Anagallis tenella, Ranunculus montevidensis and the local endemic Hydrocotyle itatiaiaensis (Apiaceae) may also be present. Ponds and lagoons such as Lagoa Bonita, locally referred to as ‘pozzinas’ usually have bottom dwelling species like Isoetes gardneriana and I. martii, while the emergent vegetation typically include Juncus microcephalus and the endemic Juncus ustulatus (Juncaceae) together with several species of Eriocaulaceae. Creeping plants like Lilaeopsis ulei and the local endemic Boopis itatiaiae (Calyceraceae) may also be present. Stream margins are typically dominated by shrubby vegetation in which Azara uruguayensis, Leucothoe rivularis and Myrica hispida usually predominate, while the ground layer of these communities is typically dominated by creeping plants such as Blechnum pennamarina and the endemic Geranium brasiliense (Geraniaceae) and Itatiaia cleistopetala (family?).


Anon. 1996. Habitats of South America. Institute of Terrestrial Ecology and Intitut Royal Des Sciences Naturelles De Belgique.

Caiafa, A. N. & Da Silva, A. F. 2007. Structural analysis of the vegetation on a highland granitic rock outcrop in Southeast Brazil. Revista Brasileira De Botanica, 30: 657-664.

Ribeiro, K. T., Medina, B. M. O. & Scarano, F. R. 2007. Species composition and biogeographic relations of the rock outcrops flora on the high plateau of Itatiaia, SE-Brazil. Revista Brasiliera de Botânica, 30: 623-639.

Segadas-Vianna, F. 1965. Ecology of the Itatiaia Range, Southeastern Brazil. Arqu. Mus. Nacional, LIII: 1-30.