Search the website

Lichen: Blarneya hibernica

« Back
Blarneya hibernica grows at the bottom of trees

Blarneya hibernica grows at the bottom of trees

Blarneya hibernica grows typically at the base of oak and holly

Blarneya hibernica grows typically at the base of oak and holly

Blarneya hibernica showing sporodochia

Blarneya hibernica showing sporodochia

Vice County Web Map - Blarneya hibernica

Vice County Web Map - Blarneya hibernica

Name: Blarneya hibernica D.Hawksw., Coppins & P.James (1980)

Pronunciation:Blarneya hibernica

Conservation Evaluation: Near Threatened, Nationally Rare, International Responsibility

Body Type: Crustose

Description: The cotton-like soft thallus is pinkish white with a green tinge. Sometimes sprinkled with crystals. The edges show tiny filamentous threads giving it a diffuse perimeter. Both apothecia and perithecia are absent. The small pale yellow convex powdery structures that look superficially like soralia (C-) are in fact sporodochia (C+) that produce reproductive spores (conidia).

Chemical Tests: C+/- red (fleeting), K-, KC+/- red, Pd-, UV+ powdery bloom

Nature Notes: Typically found growing in old woodlands near the base of sheltered and dry oak and holly. On inspection with a hand lens, particularly near the edge of the thallus, the cotton-like effect can be seen to be due to a matt of hyphae. These grow over already established lichens such as Enterographa crassa or Lecanactis abietina taking over the photobiont (a Trentepohlia algae in this case). Eventually the host dies and Blarneya hibernica establishes itself as an independent living lichen.

Vice county distribution map: See map

Link: Map this species on the Lichen Survey

Other species recorded in Ireland:

No other Blarneya species recorded. It is the only known species in this group.

Text and images © Paul Whelan, 2009.