My main interests are the systematics, ecology, and geography of ferns.
I work primarily on ferns from the American tropics, especially those from the
Central American and Andean countries. In these regions, ferns are prominent in
the vegetation, usually composing about 10% of the total vascular plant flora.
Much of my systematic research has involved writing floras and monographs.
I was the main writer, editor, and organizer for the pteridophyte volume
of Flora Mesoamericana, a book that covers the pteridophytes from southern
Mexico to Panama. This book is the largest fern flora ever written (it
treats the nearly 1400 species). I have also published taxonomic monographs
of six fern genera (Polybotrya, Olfersia, Stigmatopteris,
and Asplenium sect. Hymenasplenium, and the neotropical species
of Lomariopsis and Callipteris).
I am currently collaborating with John Mickel (my predecessor at the
Garden) and Timothy Motley on a phylogenetic study of Elaphoglossum,
one of the world's largest fern genera. I am also collaborating with John
Mickel on a guide to 300 common fern species in the American tropics and
a manual to the pteridophyte genera of the Americas. I also collaborate
with Drs. Hanna Tuomisto and Kalle Rukoleinen, from the University of Turku,
Finland, and Axel Poulsen, from Aarhus University, Denmark. We are using
color-enhanced satellite images to study the heterogeneity of vegetation
in Amazonian Ecuador and trying to relate this to differences in the fern
Besides research, I teach. I co-organize a six-week-long course, Tropical
Plant Systematics, in Costa Rica for the Organization of Tropical Studies
(both English and Spanish versions of the course). From time to time I
also teach (in Spanish) short, two- to three-week-long pteridology courses
in Latin America -- so far in Venezuela, Ecuador, Bolivia, and Costa Rica
-- and I have written a bilingual manual to the genera of neotropical ferns
to teach this course with. Every three or four years I teach a full-semester,
graduate-level course in pteridology at The New York Botanical Garden.
I also interpret ferns to the public. I am the Program Chairman of the
New York Chapter of the American Fern Society, which meets the first Saturday
of every month at the Garden, and I write two or three articles each year
for the Fiddlehead Forum, the popular bulletin of the American Fern Society.
Finally, I serve as Associate Editor to the American Fern Journal
CURATOR, Institute of Systematic Botany.
Field Botanist, Illinois Natural Areas Inventory (summers of 1976 and 1977).
Field Botanist, Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources, Scientific Areas
Section (summers of 1978-1980).
M.S., University of Illinois at Carbondale (1980).
Field Botanist, Illinois Natural History Survey (1981).
Ph.D., University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign (1986).
Assistant Curator, Missouri Botanical Garden, St. Louis (1987-1993).
Assistant Professor, Department of Systematic Botany, Aarhus University,
Associate Professor, Biology Dept., Univ. of Arkansas at Little Rock (1996-1997).
Associate Curator, The New York Botanical Garden (1998-2001 ).
Curator, The New York Botanical Garden (2001-present).
E-mail address: email@example.com
- Hoshizaki, B. J. and R. C. Moran. 2001. Fern Grower’s Manual.
Timber Press. 604 pp.
- Moran, R. C. and A. R. Smith. 2001. "Phytogeographic relationships between
neotropical and African-Madagascan pteridophytes." Brittonia 53: 304--351.
- Tryon, A.F. and R.C. Moran. 1997. The Ferns and Allied Plants of New
England. Massachusetts Audubon Society. 325 pp.
- Moran, R.C. 1995. “The importance of mountains to pteridophytes,
with emphasis on neotropical montane forests.” In: S.P. Churchill et
al., eds., Biodiveristy and Conservation of Neotropical Montane Forests,
p. 359—363. New York Bot. Gard.
- Moran, R.C. and R. Riba, eds. for Pteridophytes. 1995. Flora Mesoamericana.
Volumen 1. Pteridofitas, Psilotaceae a Salviniaceae, Univ. Nacional Autónoma
de México, Ciudad Universitaria. 470 pp. [In Spanish]
- Murakami, N. and R.C. Moran. 1993. "Monograph of the neotropical species
of Asplenium sect. Hymenasplenium (Aspleniaceae)." Ann. Missouri
Bot. Gard. 80: 1-38.
- Moran, R.C. 1991. "Monograph of the Neotropical fern genus Stigmatopteris
(Dryopteridaceae)." Ann. Missouri Bot. Gard. 78: 857-914.
- Yatskievych, G. & R.C. Moran. 1989. “Primary divergence
and species concepts in ferns.” Amer. Fern J. 79: 36-45.
- Moran, R.C. 1987. "Monograph of the neotropical fern genus Polybotrya
(Dryopteridaceae)." Ill. Nat. Hist. Surv. Bull. 34: 1-138.
- Moran, R.C. 1987. “Sterile-fertile leaf dimorphy and evolution
of soral types in Polybotrya (Dryopteridaceae).” Syst. Bot.
- Moran, R.C. 1982. “The Asplenium trichomanes complex in the
United States and adjacent Canada.” Amer. Fern J. 72: 5-11.