Observation 112002: Caloplaca diphyodes (Nyl.) Jatta

When: 2012-10-02

Collection location: Meadows Campground, Okanogan Co., Washington, USA [Click for map]

Who: Richard Droker (wanderflechten)

Specimen available

on Si rock in intermittently inundated small rivulet; with Staurothele fissa

McCune comments “…the distinctive morphology of the North American streamside material suggests that there is justification for continuing to use a name other than C. atroalba for the semi-aquatic species in North America. In contrast C. atroalba typically occurs in dry, exposed habitats”


lichen is 3cm across
note fimbriate prothallus
KOHthese may be a bit immature as for some others the isthmus was very thin

Proposed Names

55% (1)
Eye3 Eyes3
Used references: Bruce McCune’s key Caloplaca in Pacific Northwest, Revised July 2011 at http://people.oregonstate.edu/~mccuneb/Caloplaca.pdf;
Thomson, J.W. (1997) American Arctic Lichens, 2. The Microlichens
Based on microscopic features: hymenium ca. 100u; hypothecium ca. 100u; spores average 19×9u, septum 3 or 4u; paraphyses ca. 2u diameter, ca. 5u at apices;
Based on chemical features: K neg, pol neg; lack of chemistry unusual for Caloplaca – perhaps Jason can suggest an alternative

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Eye3 = Observer’s choice
Eyes3 = Current consensus


Add Comment
Looks like you have the right ID
By: Jason Hollinger (jason)
2012-10-07 02:16:34 CEST (+0200)

at least based on my reading of McCune’s key. Maybe you’re right about it being easy to overlook. But there are plenty of workers who delight in black button crusts; there are far less conspicuous members of that… um… “elite” group of lichens. It’s always possible that you just have a good eye for interesting things, you know… :)

By: Richard Droker (wanderflechten)
2012-10-07 01:14:27 CEST (+0200)

My feeling was that this seems so easy to ignore in the field, as it isn’t colorful, etc. Sort of like Leptogium rivale, which I seem to find in the Cascades mostly when I’m consciously looking for it. Given what you say I should try to confirm the identification of C. diphyodes though.

I don’t think it’s that common
By: Jason Hollinger (jason)
2012-10-06 07:08:39 CEST (+0200)

Only 12 US and Canadian records on CNALH. Kristinsson has reported it a few times for the arctic, Debolt from Glacier N.P., and Weber in the Colorado catalog. Probably a few other sources I haven’t done yet, too, but you get the picture. Compare to C. impolita, for example, hardly a common species and fairly restricted to the southwest, but it is reported from 15 checklists (at least) and 158 records on CNALH.

By: Richard Droker (wanderflechten)
2012-10-05 17:20:24 CEST (+0200)

Thanks Jason

Thinking this might be relatively common so I’ll be watching for it in similar habitat.

Very neat!
By: Jason Hollinger (jason)
2012-10-02 21:11:43 CEST (+0200)

Always wanted to see one of the black Caloplaca. Well done!

Created: 2012-10-02 20:04:48 CEST (+0200)
Last modified: 2012-10-02 20:12:22 CEST (+0200)
Viewed: 69 times, last viewed: 2017-06-14 11:28:02 CEST (+0200)
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