Observation 108781: Caloplaca chalybaea (Fr.) Müll. Arg.
When: 2012-09-02
Who: zaca
No herbarium specimen

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I thought Aspicilia, too!
By: Jason Hollinger (jason)
2012-09-06 22:05:32 PDT (-0700)

You get all the cool Caloplaca, it’s not fair. :)

Big surprise!
By: zaca
2012-09-06 15:37:26 PDT (-0700)

When started to observe the spores I though that I had chosen the wrong genus, because the asci had more than 8 spores each. The conclusion was correct but by another reason. In fact, the asci had 8 polarilocular spores each. So, at the end I recognize that it must be my “very old friend” Caloplaca variabilis , which as the name suggests is indeed very variable (see observation 67542 and observation 79945 for another forms of this species) or a similar species. Looking into the Briish Flora I found a species, Caloplaca chalybaea, with features that fit very well: the thallus can be either dark (as C. variabilis) or lead-grey, the apothecia are immersed in the thallus and can be several per areole. The chemisty of the two species are similar, though C. chalybaea is said to be K+/- pale purple on apothecia and C. variabilis is said to be K-. The latter species can present longer and wider spores. I believe that this is C. chalybaea, but can’t exclude the possibility of being C. variabilis.
In my defense I can argue that in British Flora is written:“Superficially resembles an Aspicilia in habit but readily distinguished by the polarilocular ascospores”.

Created: 2012-09-05 15:51:46 PDT (-0700)
Last modified: 2012-09-06 15:37:02 PDT (-0700)
Viewed: 70 times, last viewed: 2016-10-26 23:13:54 PDT (-0700)
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