Alectoria sarmentosa (Ach.) Ach.

A sensitive boreal species, very rare in the Czech Republic. At first sight, it resembles members of the genus Usnea, but on closer inspection, it is well-identifiable thanks to the elevated white pseudocyphelia and flattened thallus at least at its base. This lichen grows mainly on branches in spruce canopies in humid parts of well-preserved mountain forests. In the past, it used to occur in inverse localities at lower elevations as well, but it strongly declined in all regions in the second half of the 20th century. Currently, it is known to occur rarely in the Novohradské hory, Šumava, Krkonoše, Hrubý Jeseník and Slavkovský les Mts. Relatively rich populations persist probably only on Mt Praděd in the Hrubý Jeseník Mts and in the cirque of the lake Plešné jezero in the Šumava Mts. Historically, the species was reported also from the Písek and Podyjí regions, Žďárské vrchy uplands and the Jizerské hory and Králický Snežník Mountains. The range of the species covers Europe, Asia and both Americas.

From the similarly coloured A. ochroleuca, A. sarmentosa may be distinguished chemically (it contains alectoronic or squamatic acid in the medulla), and by being epiphytical. However, there are also terricolous populations assigned to the species in northern Europe, referred to as subsp. vexillifera. Those differ from A. ochroleuca mainly in the more procumbent thalli with flattened main branches (Velmala & Myllys 2011).

Literature: Velmala S. & Myllys L. (2011): Alectoria. – In: Thell A. & Moberg R. [eds], Nordic Lichen Flora 4: 14–16. Malíček J. & Palice Z. (2013): Lichens of the virgin forest reserve Žofínský prales (Czech Republic) and surrounding woodlands. – Herzogia 26: 253–292. Šoun J., Bouda F., Kocourková J., Malíček J., Palice Z., Peksa O., Svoboda D. & Vondrák J. (2017): Zajímavé nálezy lišejníků z čeledi Parmeliaceae v České republice. – Bryonora 60: 46–64.

taxonomic classification:

Ascomycota Lecanoromycetes Lecanorales Parmeliaceae Alectoria

Red List (Liška & Palice 2010):CR – critically endangered
Red List (Malíček 2023):C2 – strongly endangered

Occurrence in the Czech Republic

All records: 38, confirmed 38. One click on a selected square displays particular record(s), including their source(s).


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Altitude preferences

Distribution Timeline

Substrate type

Substrate preferences

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