Sunday 8 August 2010

Rhizocarpon geographicum

The wonderful lichen in the first two photos is Rhizocarpon geographicum or Map Lichen. Being a great fan of maps and all things map related, I love this lichen and enjoy looking for shapes of countries and islands I know in the shape of the lichen on the stone. It's good to see so much lichen on Islay because lichen thrives in areas of clean air - and it certainly thrives here. The other really good thing about lichen is that, unlike some birds, flowers and butterflies, it's here all the time, so we can enjoy many different species all year round - and of course it doesn't move, making it easy to see and photograph.

The flower is the tiny Scarlet Pimpernel (Anagallis avensis). I love this diminutive flower which, although generally regarded as a weed, is very beautiful and quite showy really.

Both the lichen and the flower were seen today at Sanaigmore.


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