Spiral Extinguisher-moss - Encalypta streptocarpa


This moss forms relatively large, dull, pale green patches. Shoots are typically 1to 2 cm tall, with leaves 4 to7 mm long. The broad, more or less parallel-sided, opaque, very matt leaves narrow abruptly to a blunt, rounded tip, with the nerve ending in, or just below, the tip. Clusters of brown, thread-like propagules often occur in the leaf axils. Capsules are rarely present. They are spirally ribbed, have a peristome, and until maturity are entirely covered by the very large calyptra. This is the commonest species of Encalypta, but the only one in which capsules are rare.

Identification difficulty
Recording advice

Unless identified by a recognised expert, a photo is required and the specimen should be examined with a microscope. In the comments box, state the key or ID method used and describe the size and identifying characters.


Mainly a lowland species, it grows on base-rich rock and stone (especially limestone) and mortar in walls. It also occurs in grassland on chalk and limestone.

When to see it

All year round.

UK Status

Widespread and fairly frequent in Britain.

VC55 Status

Status in Leicestershire and Rutland not known.

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Leicestershire & Rutland Map


Yellow squares = NBN records (all known data)
Coloured circles = NatureSpot records: 2020+ | 2015-2019 | pre-2015

UK Map