Firedot Lichen

November 25, 2012

Lichen (2)

Photographer: Cindy Todd
Summary Author: Cindy Todd; Jim Foster

The photo above shows a patch of blazing firedot lichen clinging to a slab of granite in Arroyo Grande, California. This widespread lichen (genus Caloplaca) is often intensely orange, red or yellow colored. Because of their small apothecia and bright coloration, they're known as firedot or jewel lichens. Lichen are a symbiosis of fungi and alga. Although they're very resilient, they’re quite fragile, so their abundance can be used as an indicator of the health of the local environment. Photo taken on September 1, 2012.

Photo Details: Camera: Canon PowerShot SX120 IS; Focal Length: 6.0mm; Aperture: f/2.8; Exposure Time: 0.020 s (1/50); ISO equiv: 160.