Cladonia cervicornis (Ach.) Flot. s.str.

Cladonia cervicornis forms large, elongate, partly erect primary squamules while podetia are usually missing. The squamules are twisted and upcurled when dry, exposing the white underside, which is often pinkish or purplish. Older squamules are dark purple to blue grey or even brown, especially at the bases. Morphologically, it is very similar to the related C. verticillata, which has smaller and more or less rounded squamules (van Herk & Aptroot 2003). Generally, C. verticillata is well characterized by tall podetia composed of several tiers. Those may be formed in C. cervicornis too, but are usually rarer and less developed (Ahti & Stenroos 2013, Burgaz et al. 2020). Many authors recognize the two taxa only at the level of subspecies.

Cladonia cervicornis is a suboceanic lichen, found scattered from lowlands to mountains in central Europe. In the Czech Republic, it clearly prefers lower and middle elevations. It often grows in river valleys and sandstone rock formations, where it is a typical species associated with relic pine forests, heathlands and sandy stands with low competition from vascular plants. It grows on nutrient-poor, usually acidic soil. The lichen is much rarer at higher elevations where it grows on thin soil layers on sun-exposed rocks or boulders on rock outcrops, screes or solitary boulders in pastures.

Literature: Van Herk C. M. & Aptroot A. (2003): A new status for the Western European taxa of the Cladonia cervicornis group. – Bibliotheca Lichenologica 86: 193–203. Ahti T. & Stenroos S. (2013): Cladoniaceae. – In: Ahti T., Stenroos S. & Moberg R. [eds], Nordic Lichen Flora 5: 87–89. Burgaz A. R., Ahti T. & Pino-Bodas R. (2020): Mediterranean Cladoniaceae. – Sociedad Española de Liquenología (SEL), Madrid.

taxonomic classification:

Ascomycota Lecanoromycetes Lecanorales Cladoniaceae Cladonia

Red List (Liška & Palice 2010):VU – vulnerable

Occurrence in the Czech Republic

All records: 122, confirmed 68. 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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