Worldwide in tropical and subtopical regions.
Genera 4 or 5, species ca. 34 (1 in the flora).
The multistratose “leucobryaceous” leaves of Octoblepharum, the sole representative of the family in the flora, may be taken to indicate its relationship with other mosses having similar leaves. But the distinctive peristome of Octoblepharum makes the genus difficult to classify in the Leucobryaceae, where it has traditionally been assigned, or in the Calymperaceae, where it has also been placed and from which it differs markedly in leaf structure. A. Eddy (1988+, vol. 2) assigned the genus to its own monogeneric family, Octoblepharaceae (illegitimate name), based on its peristome, but Octoblepharum seems best classified in the Leucophanaceae, where it was placed by M. Fleischer (1900–1922, vol. 1), along with three genera of similar mosses.