Plants small to medium-sized, gregarious to tufted or caespitose, green to yellowish brown, sometimes with pink tinge. Stems erect. Leaves sometimes dimorphic with vegetative leaves mostly grading into gemmiferous leaves, teniolae absent (teniola-like features rarely present in a few taxa); margins of distal lamina mostly thickened and toothed, rarely 1-stratose, in many taxa regularly bordered entirely or in part with elongate hyaline cells; costa showing two bands of stereids in cross section; medial leaf cells isodiametric. Specialized asexual reproduction by gemmae common on often modified leaves, borne on apices or adaxially and sometimes abaxially along costa of distal lamina, clavate-fusiform or filamentous. Sexual condition mostly dioicous, rarely apparently monoicous. Seta single, rarely 2-3 per perichaetium. Capsule mostly exserted, sometimes immersed, mostly cylindric; peristome present or absent. Calyptra deciduous, mostly cucullate, rarely conic-mitrate.
Species ca. 80-90 (6 in the flora): worldwide except Antarctica, mostly tropical and subtropical regions.
Syrrhopodon is characterized by its erect stems, leaves bordered with hyaline cells or with thickened and toothed margins, cancellinae, and mostly cucullate calyptra. It differs consistently from Calymperes in the latter character. Gemmae are not as uniformly present in species of Syrrhopodon as in Calymperes.