Observation 21102: Loxospora ochrophaea (Tuck.) R.C. Harris

Locality: about 5 km N Clingman’s Dome, and just a few meters E of the TN-NC border

Habitat: spruce-fir forest on a wet montane ridge

Identification: a mystery!

I wonder if we can add Icmadophila ericetorum to Jason’s list of possibilities. It would be out of range for that species. Icmadophila is mostly boreal and extends down the Rocky Mountains to Colorado, but there is an isolated tiny blue smudge in E KY on Brodo’s range map (had to use my 10x lens to verify that!). Icmadophila ericetorum would be new for North Carolina according to the most recent NC checklist (Perlmutter, 2008).

[admin – Sat Aug 14 02:06:20 +0000 2010]: Changed location name from ‘Spruce-Fir Nature Trail, Great Smoky Mountains NP, North Carolina, USA’ to ‘Spruce-Fir Nature Trail, Great Smoky Mountains National Park, North Carolina, USA

Proposed Names

0% (2)
Recognized by sight
-28% (1)
Recognized by sight
50% (2)
Recognized by sight: It seems to have affinities to Loxospora ochrophaea, but I would want to see the spores to make a final call. My next best guess would be Lecanora sp.
Used references: Brodo et al. 2001

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Eye3 = Observer’s choice
Eyes3 = Current consensus


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Never saw Brendan’s comment
By: Jason Hollinger (jason)
2012-01-28 01:02:48 -05 (-0500)

He’s absolutely right. This is perfect locality for Loxospora ochrophaea and it looks spot-on. Spores and chemistry would verify nicely, but I don’t think it’s necessary.

Definitely not Icmadophila
By: Jason Hollinger (jason)
2009-05-23 13:15:03 -05 (-0500)

Check out observation 7196. I. ericetorum is one of the most distinctive lichens out there! :) Specifically, its apothecia have no rim. Casually, the color is unmistakable. (Remniscent of a fairy puking up after-dinner mints, thus the common name. :)

By: Jason Hollinger (jason)
2009-05-18 17:11:02 -05 (-0500)

Interesting, seems a little too small and pink for Ochrolechia, too large for Lecanora, not red enough for Haematomma or Ophioparma, not lobate enough for Placopsis (none in Eastern N America anyway are there?), … and I’m quickly running out of candidates! I can’t wait until you find out what it is…

Created: 2009-05-17 20:29:43 -05 (-0500)
Last modified: 2012-01-28 01:00:56 -05 (-0500)
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