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I didn’t realize that photo has such high resolution! You’re absolutely right, that looks exactly like what Brodo describes. (And the few photos I have of such good quality of C. arbuscula/C. mitis are quite different, either entirely uniform, or with a network of white lines but with the “areoles” still being ~smooth.) Neat!
is a perfect discription for what I observed; Please have a look at the center of the first photo with magnification.
I’ve seen a few sources emphasize textural differences. C. portentosa is covered in “very thin… flocculent patches”. C. mitis has a “smoother, more uniform surface”… “relatively compact and even, not flocculent”; C. arbuscula “very compact, sometimes resembling an areolate cortex, or smooth”. (all from Brodo 2001)
Maybe the “soredia” you saw is from this “flocculent” texture of portentosa?
C. arbuscula (including C. mitis) has conspicuous gaping axils; C. rangiferina perhaps less conspicuous, but certainly very common; C. portentosa… I didn’t make any notes about the one specimen I’ve seen, but I trust Alan Silverside of course (Brodo doesn’t mention it one way or the other in Lichens of North America). C. subtenuis, on the other hand, has only occasional small pin-prick perforations, and C. evansii virtually none. Brodo claims that C. stellaris also has conspicuous gaping axils.
I’m willing to grant now that the character does seem to be consistent… but it appears to be virtually useless in distinguishing arbuscula, portentosa, stellaris, and rangiferina (my jury is still deliberating rangiferina :). Alas. It was briefly exciting, at least. :)
Irish lichens and lastdragon the holes in the axils must be of some importance in this group of Cladonia. Both refer it in their short description of the species: Jean Seawright says “Axils often perforate” and Alan Silverside goes further writing “typically with holes in the axils of the main branches”.
would help verify the ID.
Created: 2012-10-11 10:03:15 MST (-0700)
Last modified: 2012-10-13 13:29:18 MST (-0700)
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