Observation 111502: Algae

When: 2012-08-07

Collection location: Maribel Caves County Park, Wisconsin, USA [Click for map]

Who: Andrew Khitsun (Andrew)

Specimen available

Species Lists



Proposed Names

3% (2)
Recognized by sight
28% (1)
Recognized by sight: yellow dust
47% (2)
Eye3 Eyes3
Recognized by sight

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Eye3 = Observer’s choice
Eyes3 = Current consensus


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Jim Bennett confirmed it’s non-lichenized
By: Andrew Khitsun (Andrew)
2014-11-09 09:56:04 PST (-0800)
Toxic green color – probably Algae
By: Andrew Khitsun (Andrew)
2014-05-25 19:33:10 PDT (-0700)

I just changed this observation to “algae”, based on finding in the observation 159956. The color of this observation, taken without flash, is closer to the natural color of this thing. The other observation had flash used, and the color “exploded” with yellow hues.

I have a (dis)proven track record
By: Jason Hollinger (jason)
2012-09-30 23:33:11 PDT (-0700)

So, clearly, the fact that it looks like Chrysothrix to me means that it probably isn’t!

Perhaps, no hyphae.
By: Andrew Khitsun (Andrew)
2012-09-30 18:03:11 PDT (-0700)

All I can see under 4x microscope is loose green mass. And I mean loose when I say it – it’s hardly attached to the bark, and easily removed with needle. Perhaps, it’s not a lichen but algae, as you suggested.

Color is tricky even with perfect eyesight!
By: Jason Hollinger (jason)
2012-09-29 21:48:32 PDT (-0700)

I sent something to Kerry Knudsen which looked just as yellow (to me), but which turned out to “just” be algae. There are definitely epiphytic Chrysothrix from Great Lakes region. C. xanthina is the common one (apparently most of the material called C. candelaris in the east is really this species, C. candelaris s. str. is only known to occur in the west acc. to J. Lendemer). But Lendemer’s key also explicitly says C. insulizans is found on firs in Michigan. You need TLC to distinguish these silly things. Best you or I can hope to do is verify directly that there are fungal hyphae present under the microscope.

I’m not a color master, as you know
By: Andrew Khitsun (Andrew)
2012-09-29 17:52:09 PDT (-0700)

But I see it green with some yellow mixed in. Now that specimen is dry, it actually became quite green, with no yellow hue. Thomson doesn’t show any Chrysothrix species in WI, but Bennett added C. candelaris, which looks much yellower. Any tests to conduct? I’ve done UV, and it doesn’t show orange (or anything else).

Created: 2012-09-28 18:41:59 PDT (-0700)
Last modified: 2014-05-25 19:26:27 PDT (-0700)
Viewed: 84 times, last viewed: 2017-06-14 01:53:05 PDT (-0700)
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