Difference between mosses and algae

Mosses and algae belong to the plant kingdom. Both classes were evolutionary steps that Flora had to go through in order to surprise a person with a giant sequoia, a blooming orchid or a ruddy apple hovering over Newton.


Mosses are representatives of higher spore plants, along with ferns, horsetails and lyre. None of the representatives of this group blooms, does not produce fruits or seeds. They reproduce asexually, producing spores, or sexually, but the process of fertilization is possible only in the presence of a humid environment. The most common representatives of mosses are cuckoo flax, sphagnum, hairy polytrix, brium, dikran and eriopus.


In the external structure of mosses, there is a difference between individuals of the sexual and asexual generation and individuals carrying male and female germ cells. Therefore, mosses are classified as dioecious plants. Both females and males have a stem that is densely covered with leaves. The upper leaves are traditionally bright green due to the presence of chlorophyll, the lower ones are usually yellow-brown due to the destruction of pigment in low light conditions. Moss has no roots. They are attached to the ground by rhizoids, multicellular hair-like processes. Rhizoids anchor the plant in the soil and participate in the absorption of nutrients by the moss. But the same nutrients can enter the plant through other organs.

On the tops of some mosses, you can see long thin shoots, at the top of which a capsule with a lid is held. These are individuals of the asexual generation that developed from a fertilized egg. Over time, they lose their green color and the ability to photosynthesize, therefore, they feed on the individual of the sexual generation. A box with a lid is a sporangium, after the spores in it ripen, it opens. If the spores get into a highly moist soil, then they germinate in the form of a green thread, similar to filamentous algae. Such a "thread" grows, and from some of its cells individuals of the female and male sexual generations are formed. Despite the alternation of generations, the sexual generation predominates in the life cycle of mosses.

Mosses are considered the pioneers of terrestrial space, they are distributed in almost all natural areas of land, as well as in shallow fresh water bodies. Mosses regulate the water regime of soils, stimulating their waterlogging. Sphagnum moss is the main peat-forming plant and is also one of the oldest dressing materials due to its bactericidal properties.


Algae are the earliest and most ancient representatives of the plant kingdom. There are about 50 thousand species of these organisms. Among them there are unicellular, multicellular and colonial species. In the cells of all algae there are plastids of green, brown, red color, which determines the taxonomic affiliation of the plant.

Red algae (Parfira and Phyllophora)

The peculiarity of algae is its "binding" to the aquatic environment - to freshwater or salt reservoirs. But there are specimens that live in Antarctica in the snow, on the fur of sloths in South America, or enter into symbiosis with mushrooms, forming lichens.

Algae can reproduce sexually, asexually, or vegetatively using torn sections of the thallus. In brown and red algae, assemblies of cells are observed that perform the same functions as the tissues of higher plants.

Algae oxygenate the body of water and the atmosphere, produce a lot of organic matter and play a role in the formation of sedimentary rocks and soil. Algae is fed to pets, used as fertilizer, made confectionery, medicine, or used as a natural water purifier.

Conclusions TheDifference.ru

  1. Mosses are more complexly organized than algae.
  2. Algae appeared much earlier than mosses.
  3. Among algae there is a large group of unicellular organisms, all mosses are multicellular organisms.
  4. Most algae live in the aquatic environment, most mosses on land, but with a high percentage of moisture.
  5. The body of moss is differentiated into organs, only in the most developed algae it is possible to observe the prototype of tissues.
  6. In mosses there are external differences between males, females, between sexual and asexual generations. In algae, all individuals of the same species are the same.
  7. Mosses cannot reproduce vegetatively, but algae can.