Public Description of Xanthoria elegans (Link) Th. Fr.

Title: Public Description (Default)
Name: Xanthoria elegans (Link) Th. Fr.
View: public
Edit: public
Version: 3
Previous Version 

Descriptions: Create
 Public Description (Default) [Edit]

Description status: Approved
 (Latest review: 2010-04-14 19:20:30 MDT (-0600) by nathan)

Taxonomic Classification:

Domain: Eukarya
Kingdom: Fungi
Phylum: Ascomycota
Class: Lecanoromycetes
Order: Teloschistales
Family: Teloschistaceae

Diagnostic Description:

Bright orange foliose lichen on rock. Surface somewhat coarse. Underside pale, with very few hapters. Apotheciate. All orange pigment K+ instantly deep wine red.


Circumpolar, extending south in mountainous areas. Also in southern hemisphere.


On rock.

Look Alikes:

Xanthoria parietina has significantly wider, concave lobes (0.7-3.5 mm wide), X. elegans has convex lobes, 0.4-1.3 mm wide.

Xanthoria polycarpa is subfruticose due to ascending lobes, X. elegans is tightly appressed.

Some Xanthomendoza (e.g. X. montana) could be confused, but those species all have conspicuous white rhizines.

Apparently some Caloplaca can occasionally lift sufficiently from the substrate to appear to be foliose (e.g. C. trachyphylla, which has a very similar surficial texture), however close inspection will show that they are still at least partly crustose.


Common Names: Elegant Sunburst, Elegant Orange, Elegant Orange Wall Lichen, and Rock Orange.

Source: Lichen Flora of the Greater Sonoran Desert Region, Vol II, edited by Nash et al. 2004 (treatment by L. Lindblom)

Description author: Nathan Wilson (Request Authorship Credit)
Description editor: Jason Hollinger

Created: 2008-09-27 01:04:57 MDT (-0600) by Jason Hollinger (jason)
Last modified: 2010-04-14 19:20:30 MDT (-0600) by Nathan Wilson (nathan)
Viewed: 180 times, last viewed: 2018-06-02 23:26:59 MDT (-0600)