We have sequenced the 18S-26S nuclear ribosomal DNA ITS region from the genome of nine different moss species from the Ross Sea region of Antarctica. This relatively quick and simple technique enables these species to be readily distinguished, facilitating their taxonomic identification. Only a single moss shoot is required, and for identification of these bryophytes it is only necessary to determine a few hundred nucleotides of the DNA sequence in a single sequencing reaction. Several previously unidentified Antarctic moss specimens were readily characterized by comparison with ITS sequences of known moss species. The relationships between species and locations previously detected by the RAPD (Random Amplified Polymorphic DNA) technique were confirmed by DNA sequencing, demonstrating that the two techniques can be complementary for molecular analysis of the ecology of mosses in Antarctica.