skip to content

Sainsbury Laboratory


This event has now closed.

Thank you to everyone who participated in the Great British Liverwort Hunt.


Welcome to the Great British Liverwort Hunt!


Thank you for your interest in The Great British Liverwort Hunt. We have been overwhelmed by the positive responses and this activity is now fully booked!

Please keep an eye on @slcuplants and this page for updates as to whether we can accommodate more participants in the future.

 In the meantime, we would like to encourage all plant enthusiasts to join our challenge and try to identify liverworts! Snap a picture and share them on Twitter with the #LiverwortHunt



 Join us in a UK wide research project exploring issues of biodiversity, plant-microbe interactions and much more.


How this will work

- We will launch the hunt as part of the Cambridge Festival. The live events on the 28th and 30th of March will be held on Zoom and will explain the background of the project, answer questions from participants and explain in detail how to collect and send back your sample. Please do not collect or send us any samples before the launch event.

- Participants will receive a liverwort collecting kit along with clear instructions on how to correctly identify and collect their specimens in a safe and legal manner. We will be asking people to collect two liverwort species only - Lunularia cruciata and Marchantia polymorpha - to study their resistance/susceptibility to pathogens and how this differs within the same species from different regions.  We will also ask you to gather data about when and where you collected your sample.* In the first instance, we will send kits out to up to 50 participants. We are particularly keen to receive samples from across the UK, not just locally.

- Once we receive your sample, we will use it look at a range of topics: biodiversity, plant-pathogen interactions, and much else.

- We will host a number of online events over the year- behind the scenes tours of the equipment being used to study your samples, conversations with scientists and interactive workshops.

- Data from this project will inform ongoing research at SLCU - we couldn't do this without you!




Some background reading

* Participation in the sample gathering element of this project is restricted to residents of the UK for biosafety reasons. However, people living elsewhere are welcome to join all other elements of the programme, and are welcome to go on a liverwort spotting hunt of their own.

** We will take your name, email and address so that we can provide you with updates on this programme and post you a sampling kit. This data will only be held for as long as it is needed for the study. You may withdraw from the study at any time and ask for your details to be deleted.