Sunday, April 7, 2013

Lichens Growing on the Ground

Finally decided to have a go at identifying lichens growing on the ground, especially those in a non-forested habitat. Have been reluctant to do so because these lichens are not macrolichens for the most part, and are therefore harder to identify. Acquired a great reference, A Field Guide to Biological Soil Crusts of Western U.S. Drylands, to make the challenge easier (thanks to Judy Hoy for heads up). The place of choosing, State Trust School Land at the very east end of Willoughby Lane east/southeast of Stevensville, MT. Here's a video giving you some context of the place...great landscape aesthetics:

Can't believe how I overlooked...how obvious some species were (have been to this site many times).
As Henri Bergson stated: “The eye sees only what the mind is prepared to comprehend". Found the genus Xanthoparmelia and Diploschistis numerous. Here are three lichen photos with tentative identification (no chemical tests).
Xanthoparmeila norchlorochroa

Diploschistes muscorum

Fulgensia bracteata
Do you agree with the identifications :-) Can't wait to go back for another look now that I have broken the ice.