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Lichen: Caloplaca maritima

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Caloplaca maritima frequently  covers large areas of sloping rock. The pale prothallus helps to distinguish it from Caloplaca marina.

Caloplaca maritima frequently covers large areas of sloping rock. The pale prothallus helps to distinguish it from Caloplaca marina.

Caloplaca maritima: note the pale prothallus.

Caloplaca maritima: note the pale prothallus.

Name: Caloplaca maritima de Lesd.

Pronunciation: Caloplaca maritima

Conservation Evaluation: Least Concern, Nationally Scarce

Body Type: Crustose

Caloplaca maritima showing the yellow rim to the apothecia and the orange discs.

Caloplaca maritima showing the yellow rim to the apothecia and the orange discs.

Description: The thallus is pale yellow in colour; the prothallus a very light washed-out yellow. It can form large uninterrupted patches on silica-rich rocks. Apothecia have thin yellow margins and the discs tending towards being orange. They are numerous and spread evenly thoughout the thallus. Ascospores are 11-15 x 5-8 µm.

Chemical Tests: K+ crimson.

map-caloplaca-maritima

Nature Notes: This is an under-recorded species. It is found on sunny sheltered coastal sites. The silica-rich substrate is usually sloped so wetting and drying occurs rapidly. Specimens have been found up to 1 km inland. It can be confused with Caloplaca marina, although C. marina is a lot more yellow and does not form such large colonies as C. maritima. The specimen photographed here is the first recorded on the South Coast of Ireland.

Vice County distribution map of Caloplaca maritima: See Map

Link: Map this species on the Lichen Survey

Caloplaca Recorded in Ireland

  • Caloplaca alociza (A.Massal.) Mig.
  • Caloplaca arenaria (Pers.) Müll.Arg.
  • Caloplaca atroflava (Turner) Mong.
  • Caloplaca aurantia (Pers.) Hellb.
  • Caloplaca britannica R.Sant.
  • Caloplaca ceracea J.R.Laundon [3]
  • Caloplaca cerina (Ehrh. ex Hedw.) Th.Fr.
  • Caloplaca cerinella (Nyl.) Flagey
  • Caloplaca chalybaea (Fr.) Müll.Arg.
  • Caloplaca chlorina (Flot.) H.Olivier
  • Caloplaca cirrochroa (Ach.) Th.Fr.
  • Caloplaca citrina (Hoffm.) Th.Fr.
  • Caloplaca concilians (Nyl.) H.Olivier
  • Caloplaca crenularia (With.) J.R.Laundon
  • Caloplaca crenulatella (Nyl.) H.Olivier
  • Caloplaca dalmatica (A.Massal.) H.Olivier
  • Caloplaca decipiens (Arnold) Blomb. & Forssell
  • Caloplaca ferruginea (Huds.) Th.Fr. [4]
  • Caloplaca flavescens (Huds.) J.R.Laundon
  • Caloplaca flavocitrina (Nyl.) H.Olivier [5]
  • Caloplaca flavorubescens (Huds.) J.R.Laundon
  • Caloplaca flavovirescens (Wulfen) Dalla Torre & Sarnth.
  • Caloplaca holocarpa (Hoffm.) A.E.Wade
  • Caloplaca lactea (A.Massal.) Zahlbr.
  • Caloplaca littorea Tav.
  • Caloplaca luteoalba (Turner) Th.Fr.
  • Caloplaca marina (Wedd.) Zahlbr. ex Du Rietz
  • Caloplaca maritima de Lesd.
  • Caloplaca microthallina (Wedd.) Zahlbr.
  • Caloplaca obliterans (Nyl.) Blomb. & Forssell
  • Caloplaca obscurella (Lahm ex Körb.) Th.Fr.
  • Caloplaca ochracea (Schaer.) Flagey
  • Caloplaca polycarpa (A.Massal.) Zahlbr.
  • Caloplaca saxicola (Hoffm.) Nordin [7]
  • Caloplaca teicholyta (Ach.) J.Steiner
  • Caloplaca thallincola (Wedd.) Du Rietz
  • Caloplaca ulcerosa Coppins & P James
  • Caloplaca variabilis (Pers.) Müll.Arg.
  • Caloplaca verruculifera (Vain.) Zahlbr.

Text and images © Paul Whelan, 2009.