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Images of British Lichens

Phaeophyscia orbicularis (Neck.) Moberg

Thallus foliose, often forming rounded colonies with evenly radiating lobes, light to dark or brownish grey, green when wet, soralia rounded and convex, mostly laminar, but narrower and marginal towards the periphery of the colony, lower medulla white, orange pigment sometimes developing in the soralia and on damaged areas of cortex (see lowest photograph); apothecia infrequent, with rather thick, smooth margins and dark discs. Widespread and common on bark, walls and concrete, often in company with Physcia and Xanthoria species as indicators of nitrogen enrichment (can easily be confused with Physcia caesia when the two species grow together on concrete and enriched stonework, but usually a darker grey, with a smooth, not flecked, upper surface, and flatter lobes).

Refs: Smith et al. (2009), 694; Purvis et al. (1992), 464; Dobson (2005), 333-4 (photo); Dobson (2011), 335 (photo); Jahns (1983), 250-251 (photo, as Physcia orbicularis, printed with incorrect colour in my copy); Nordic Lichen Flora (2002) 2: 31, 97 (photo); van Haluwyn et al. (2009), 88-9 (photo); van Herk & Aptroot (2004, 2013), 294-5 (photo); Wirth (1995), 2: 718 & 719 (photos), 730; Wirth et al. (2004), 115 (photo); Wirth, Hauck & Schulz (2013), 2: 859 (photo), 875; Frahm et al. (2010), 131-2 (photo); Valcárcel et al. (2003), 302-3 (photo); Puntillo (1996), plate 31 (photo); Moberg & Holmåson (1984), 198 (photo); Holien & Tønsberg (2008), 76 (photo); Stenroos et al. (2011), 348 (photos); Brodo et al. (2001), 542-3 (photo); Hinds & Hinds (2007), 382-3 (photo); McCune & Geiser (2009), 263 (photo); Lichen Atlas of the British Isles 3: 1107 (1998).

Phaeophyscia orbicularis, on concrete
On concrete, Kindrogan, Perthshire, April 2008
Phaeophyscia orbicularis, wet, with apothecia, on bark
Phaeophyscia orbicularis, close-up of apothecia and soralia
Phaeophyscia orbicularis, dry, with apothecia, on bark
On Sycamore (Acer pseudoplatanus), with apothecia, wet and dry states, Kindrogan, Perthshire, March/April 2008
Phaeophyscia orbicularis, on bark
On Grey Sallow (Salix cinerea ssp. cinerea) in carr, Wicken Fen, Cambridgeshire, April 2005,
variant with conspicuous amount of orange pigment on old, damaged cortex and in soralia

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Uploaded June 2008, last updated December 2013 (first hosted at, January 2003, substantially changed and extended