Ramalina europaea in Britain

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Neil Sanderson
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Ramalina europaea in Britain

Post by Neil Sanderson » Mon Sep 23, 2019 9:51 pm

In 2017 a paper came out in the Lichenologist: Gasparyan et al (2017) “Ramalina europaea and R. labiosorediata, two new species of the R. pollinaria group (Ascomycota: Ramalinaceae), and new typifications for Lichen pollinarius and L. squarrosus” https://www.cambridge.org/core/terms. h ... 2917000226. This split Ramalina pollinaria in Europe in to two species Ramalina pollinaria s. str. and the new Ramalina europaea. Ramalina pollinaria s. lat. has been recorded widely in Britain, so this raises the question of which segregate we have or do we have both? At the time I put this up on the old UK Lichens site, as I did not know Ramalina pollinaria at all, but from the most recent BSL dot map it does not look like may people have been recording this species recently.

Ramalina pollinaria.jpg
BLS dot map Ramalina pollinaria s. lat. (Blue = 1999 or earlier & Red = 2000 or latter)

Finally I have found some myself and could compare the material to Gasparyan et al (2017). During a weeks holiday in a cottage on the side of The Striperstones, I picked up my first collection of Ramalina pollinaria s. lat. from the branch of Holly in moorland near improved fields. This formed a beautiful mat along the branches with the thin branched thallus ending in spine-like branchlets. The latter ended in small nodules, from which the punctiform soralia develop. The soredia were granular 50 – 60 µm diameter.

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Scans of specimen

The species are morphologically distinct, with the soralia formation and distribution the most distinctive features and, as the spine-like branchlets with solaria developing at their tips are the main defining feature of Ramalina europaea, so this looks very much what I have got

Excerpts from paper:

Screenshot 2019-09-23 at 21.19.45.png
Screenshot 2019-09-23 at 21.23.16.png
Screenshot 2019-09-23 at 21.23.55.png

The description on the LGBI includes the following
the apices dissected with many small, nodulose proliferations, or more flattened branches with wavy or deeply incised or notched margins
The first half is certainly description of Ramalina europaea, the latter could be of Ramalina pollinaria s. str.. We certainly have Ramalina europaea and it is likely we also have Ramalina pollinaria s. str., as Gasparyan et al (2017) record this from The Netherlands. So do keep a look out for Ramalina pollinaria s. lat, at the very least the lack of recent records points to a serious decline, either in the species, or in recording it, and that needs sorting out! Gasparyan et al (2017) recorded Ramalina europaea from both rock and bark, while they only recorded Ramalina pollinaria s. str. from bark. The LGBI implies that Ramalina pollinaria s. lat. was mainly recorded on rock, so it may be that most British and Irish records refer to Ramalina europaea.
Neil Sanderson

Neil Sanderson
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Posts: 80
Joined: Tue Jan 08, 2019 7:30 am

Re: Ramalina europaea in Britain

Post by Neil Sanderson » Sun Sep 29, 2019 10:51 pm

Ramalina europaea like London buses: you wait ages for one – and then two come along at the same time; well a few days latter. I think I now have more material of Ramalina pollinaria s. lat., again appearing to be Ramalina europaea. This time from a Crab Apple branch on the edge of a pasture woodland in the New Forest. Unlikely to Stiperstones material described above, this is mature material and confirms what I thought, that the Shropshire material was a sward of young thalli. This material has wider thalli wider, to a maximum of 3mm wide, but still has the diagnostic spine-like branchlets. These occur thinly on the old thalli but more abundantly on young material at the base.

2019-09-29-01 Ramalina europaea Matley 2.jpg
A scan of Ramalina europaea from a Crab Apple branch, Matley Wood, New Forest

This is most like Ramalina lacera, but Ramalina europaea and Ramalina pollinaria s.str. are much narrower up to 3mm wide, while Ramalina lacera has thalli over 1cm wide with with reticulate ridges. Ramalina europaea and Ramalina pollinaria s.str. lack these ridges.

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Ramalina lacera, Crab Apple twigs, Setley Plain, New Forest

Ramalina pollinaria s. lat. is new to the New Forest and this appears to be the first recent record of Ramalina pollinaria s. lat. from Hampshire.

Neil
Neil Sanderson

CJohnsonOHBR
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Re: Ramalina europaea in Britain

Post by CJohnsonOHBR » Tue Oct 01, 2019 8:02 am

Thank you for drawing our attention to this new information on Ramalina europaea and R. pollinaria s.lat.
A severe shortage of trees makes it unlikely that I will find either, although there is a record of R. pollinaria dating back to 1960 from Stornoway on the island of Lewis. I will look carefully at the trees the next time we go to Stornoway where there is our only sizeable area of broad-leaved, mature trees.
Also thank you for flagging the images of R. pollinaria used on the NBN Atlas as incorrect. Regular users of the Atlas are aware that the images of species used can be incorrect and misleading, and it should encorage more of us to "flag" those which should be removed and replaced.

Christine

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