Wednesday 4 May 2011

Hooked on Lichens

I don't know what to say about my expedition yesterday with the British Lichen Society people  - except I'm hooked! How I am ever going to manage to go a 'proper' walk now I don't know, and if I manage to get someone to go with me once, it's a sure thing they won't want to come with me again. It was bad enough when I was stopping to look at butterflies, beetles, botany and birds; now I'll be stopping every few yards to examine every fencepost, wall or stone that I pass. Worse still, not only will I have my binocs and camera hanging round my neck, but I'll now have a hand lens to join in the tangle of straps. I never travelled light before, but now I'll have even more stuff to jam in the rucsack - bottles of bleach and potasium hydroxide, massive lichen field guide and the compulsory hammer and chisel. Wow! I can't wait to get out again!

Potassium hydroxide applied to the genus Calaplaca turns the lichen reddish/purplish which helps distinguish it from the genus Candelariella. Photos show Maxine applying the test to Calaplaca on the Oa, and the red result. Thanks to the BLS for allowing me to join them and for being so patient with a complete beginner.


No comments:

Post a Comment