“Chiseled Sunken Disk Lichen”: {A. contorta}

Aspicilia contorta (aka “Chiseled Sunken Disk Lichen”)

Identification Characteristics

Description: Thallus dark olive to olive-gray, thick, areolate, with hemispherical to “chiseled” areoles that are contiguous or dispersed, often with depressed, white pseudocyphellae. Apothecia deeply immersed, pruinose, usually one per areole; spores broadly ellipsoid to spherical, 20-30 x 15-25 um, 4 per ascus.

Chemistry: All reactions negative (no lichen substances).

Substrate: On noncalcarous or calcarous rock.

Lookalikes: The areoles of A. contorta, although sometimes contiguous, are not radically oriented or bordered by a distinct prothallus as in A. calcarea, a very similar widespread species on limy rocks.

Bibliography: Lichens of North America, by Brodo, Sharnoff, & Sharnoff

Database Entry:  Distance Everheart 12-26-13

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