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An Introduction to Lichen ~ by WoodlandsTV

By woodlandstv

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"What actually is a lichen?" In this film, we learn about the structure and function of lichen, as well as the three main growth forms and how to identify different lichen forms. Lichenologist Joe Hope invites us to have a closer look at the fascinating lichen ecosystem especially the relationship between lichen and algae. He clearly explains some key terms that will help you understand more about the lichens in your local woodland.

A film for woodlands.co.uk by Jemma Cholawo

Posted in: Uncategorised ~ On: 16 July, 2019

12 comments so far

V isions
July 16, 2019

That was a great introduction, thank you!

When the fungus in a lichen reproduces, do the fungus spores contain within them the symbiotic partner, or do they somehow meet up again, and re-combine once the fungus starts growing in a new location?

Any recommended reading?

C U Jimmy
July 16, 2019

Are they edible?.
A real eye opener thank you.

Leann Kennedy
July 16, 2019

Very interesting.

Tony Blakeney
July 16, 2019

Thank you for the type of video that Woodlands TV does best = fascinating and educational.

Tom Stenning
July 16, 2019

I'm sold, could anyone recommend any good books on lichens? Either of the field guide or reference variety.

July 16, 2019

Love the channel and the content. You should really consider changing your profile picture. It looks a bit dull and outdated.. Keep up with the amazing videos!

July 16, 2019

Great channel to geek out on 🙂

Barry Turner
July 17, 2019


July 26, 2019

Great question!

So, no the fungal spores disperse independently of the photobiont … its not very clearly understood how the spores find their partner in the wild … one idea is that the spores manage to 'steal' photobiont cells from other lichens or lichen propagules. By propagules I mean the vegetative reproduction structures (typically soredia — powdery bits — or isidia — peggy bits) that lichens produce asexually, which will contain parts of both fungus and photobiont. These aren't spores, but they must often be a more reliable form of dispersal, since they are quite widespread throughout the group.

My favourite introductory work on lichens is this book by William Purvis


Cheers, Joe

July 26, 2019

Probably only in a crisis!

I'm told that the first nations peoples of NW America used to eat Bryoria (which looks like horesehair). It's not very appetising looking , and I think it was only really eaten in hard times!

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