Observation 220956: Leptorhaphis Körber

When: 2015-10-18

Collection location: Kettle Moraine State Forest North, Wisconsin, USA [Click for map]

Who: Andrew Khitsun (Andrew)

No specimen available


Copyright © 2015 Jason Hollinger (jason)
Copyright © 2015 Jason Hollinger (jason)
Copyright © 2016 Jason Hollinger (jason)
section of perithecium in water
Copyright © 2016 Jason Hollinger (jason)
section of perithecium in K/I

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Add Comment
Yes, I wondered about those wavy structures, too
By: Jason Hollinger (jason)
2016-03-14 22:54:06 PDT (-0700)

I’m not convinced there’s any correlation between them and the lichen found on the one piece you gave me. There may be, or there may not.

As for “always on birch”… It’s hard to say anything about where these are “always” found… I’d never even heard of the darned things! Can’t be that common, surely? And besides birch and aspen don’t seem all that different to me. (Lichens are no doubt rolling their eyes at that staggering piece of myopic ignorance!)

I looked up whatever I could find on this genus and have some concerns:
By: Andrew Khitsun (Andrew)
2016-03-14 20:03:50 PDT (-0700)

One is – it’s always shown on birch, whether in Europe or America – while my specimen come from aspen. And the other is – I didn’t find these wavy structures anywhere else: perhaps, this was something else on the tree bark, and then later on populated by Leptorhaphis? The genus doesn’t seem to be the one that would form elaborate thallus.

Added close-ups and microscopy
By: Jason Hollinger (jason)
2016-01-17 22:33:31 PST (-0800)

Spores were 1-septate, ~25×2.5um, slightly curved, with rounded ends. Perithecia are tiny, only 100-150um wide, without any “basal fringe”. Hymenium is I+ red-brown, K/I+ bluish.

This matches L. atomaria better than L. epidermidis in Bruce Ryan’s key. … But of course, the British Flora differs on some important points, such as whether L. atomaria has a visible thallus, color of hymenium in I, and size of spores. But other than that… ;)

Presumably that’s why I left it at genus.

Jason, this is #10182015-2.
By: Andrew Khitsun (Andrew)
2016-01-17 17:36:15 PST (-0800)

It seems you solved the mystery of the enchanted circles for me? Bennett lists Leptorhaphis epidermidis in the state.

Just as baffling as ever!
By: Jason Hollinger (jason)
2015-10-28 19:17:47 PDT (-0700)
“Old friend”
By: Andrew Khitsun (Andrew)
2015-10-28 18:30:35 PDT (-0700)

I posted the same thing few years back, calling it mysterious lichen circles or something like that. This time around I got samples and looked at it under microscope (and have better camera too). There are black “poppy seeds” all over this thing, which can be seen in photos. They look like some sort of perithecia, and some of them fall out, leaving craters like perithecia do. These things persevere even after the rest of the bark falls off on a rotten trunk (last photo), and can fend off other fungal organisms (photo before the last one). The host tree is most likely Aspen (and I’ve seen them on Aspen before).

Created: 2015-10-28 18:19:31 PDT (-0700)
Last modified: 2016-01-17 22:13:33 PST (-0800)
Viewed: 81 times, last viewed: 2017-06-20 23:38:03 PDT (-0700)
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