Habitat: Growing on conifer twigs in spruce-fir woodland at an elevation of about 2,250m, just below a small cluster of subalpine larch, Larix lyallii, and the treeline about 100m higher.

Identification: There are two species to consider (characterizations from McCune and Geiser, 2009, pp.148 and 153):
Hypogymnia enteromorpha (P+ yellow to red; very common west of the Cascades, also found east of the Cascades; low to mid-elevation forests)
Hypogymnia occidentalis (P- or pale yellow; common east of the Cascades, also found west of the Cascades; low elevation to subalpine)
The CNALH locality map for Hypogymnia enteromorpha does not show any records for Alberta. The nearest collecton sites are for two records by Rosentreter at 700m in Wells Gray Provincial Park in British Columbia and at 900m at Priest Lake in northern Idaho. The CNALH map for Hypogymnia occidentalis shows two records in and near Banff National Park. The inland locality and high elevation indicate that this is probably Hypogymnia occidentalis.

CNALH Hypogymnia enteromorpha images and locality map, and a larger, interactive locality map.

CNALH Hypogymnia occidentalis images, description, and locality map, and a larger, interactive locality map.

Species Lists


Proposed Names

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Used references: McCune and Geiser, 2009, p.153

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Add Comment
thanks, debbie!
By: Chris Parrish (kitparrish)
2010-09-28 17:43:45 CDT (-0400)
can’t argue lichen taxonomy…
By: Debbie Viess (amanitarita)
2010-09-28 15:50:57 CDT (-0400)

but I sure appreciate good composition in a photo. nice shot.

By: Jason Hollinger (jason)
2010-09-28 14:08:40 CDT (-0400)
alpine zone at about 2,250m
By: Chris Parrish (kitparrish)
2010-09-28 13:52:39 CDT (-0400)

I added a few notes to the observation about Hypogymnia occidentalis vs. Hypogymnia enteromorpha. McCune and Geiser (2009, p.153) mention that small specimens of the two species are very similar, but can be distinguished by the P test. In this case, the inland locality and high elevation indicate Hypogymnia occidentalis.

Did you rule out H. enteromorpha?
By: Jason Hollinger (jason)
2010-09-27 20:30:46 CDT (-0400)

Can’t tell the scale of the photo, but it looks like it may be a bit large for occidentalis. May be out of range for enteromorpha, though. Alpine? Just a thought.