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The thallophyte communities growing on both natural and artificial rock surfaces are well defined often species-rich.
The thallophyte syntaxa of bryophytes, lichens and algae have been compiled for the first Europe-wide checklist of high ranked syntaxa including the bryophyte, lichen and algal syntaxa (EuroVegChecklist: MUCINA & al., in press).
Table 1 Classes of the thallophyte syntaxa, contributors (B: bryophytes, L: lichens, A: algae & cyanobacteria) and their habitat type (Cladonio-Lepidozietea and Desmococcetea olivacei are listed twice).
In an obituary of Pringsheim, Scott (1895) championed Pringsheim's opinion that the free-living sexual and asexual forms of thallophytes were homologous, and that their alternation was the phylogenetic precursor to the alternation of gametophytic and sporophytic generations in archegoniates.
The homologous theory got rid of the need to intercalate a new generation and required only the modification of the already existing sexual and asexual forms of thallophytes. Scott wrote "There is no reason to believe that the Bryophyta, as we know them, were the precursors of the vascular Cryptogams at all....