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Abstract Detail

Bryological and Lichenological Section/ABLS

Rose, Anita K. [1].

Distribution and occurrence of lichen species across Virginia.

TEMPORAL dynamics in lichen populations may correlate with climate and air quality and serve as early warning indicators of potential forest health degradation. The USDA Forest Service, Forest Inventory and Analysis Program is monitoring for changes in lichen populations across the United States. This survey is the first to systematically survey lichen species across larges regions, providing valuable information on species distributions and occurrences. Between 1994 and 1999, 123 unique lichen species were recorded on 53 plots across Virginia. The average number of species per plot across all plots and years was 15.4 (min=3, max=35). The most common species sampled were Flavoparmelia caperata (L.) Hale, Parmotrema hypotropum (Nyl.) Hale, and Punctelia rudecta (Ach.) Krog. Of the 123 species tallied, 28% were found on only one plot. Several potential new records for Virginia were encountered, including Bulbothrix confoederata (Culb.) Hale, Parmotrema dilatatum (Vain.) Hale, and Usnea hirta (L.) Wigg, among others. For several species, range extensions may be warranted. For instance, Parmotrema arnoldii (DR.) Hale, previously known only from the mountains in Virginia, was recorded on the Coastal Plain and the Piedmont. Species sensitive to pollution, such as Leptogium cyanescens (Rabenh.) Korber and Parmelia squarrosa Hale, occurred on 25 67% of plots across all major physiographic provinces. Lichens can be useful in detecting changes in ecosystem health, whether due to changes in air quality or climate. Lichens are also components of biodiversity, and as such can reflect changes in forest biodiversity and may be an early indicator of more serious developing conditions. In order to detect changes in lichen communities, however, information on their occurrence and distribution, from studies such as this, is necessary. Additionally, a better understanding of the correlations between changes in lichen communities, species trends, and change in forest functions is needed.

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Related Links:
National Forest Health Monitoring
Air Quality and Lichen Communities
Forest Inventory and Analysis

1 - USDA Forest Service, Southern Research Station, 4700 Old Kingston Pike, Knoxville, Tennesee, 37919, USA

forest health
air quality.

Presentation Type: Poster:Posters for Sections
Session: 48-5
Location: Auditorium/Bell Memorial Union
Date: Tuesday, August 1st, 2006
Time: 12:30 PM
Abstract ID:593

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