Canopy lichen

Lichen

Lichens in the News

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You cannot spend time in a redwood forest without coming across lichen. Only a few lichen species will catch your eye on the bark of a redwood but up in the canopy and on the forest floor an abundance of these organisms will surround you. A few years ago we conducted canopy research at Muir Woods looking at lichen diversity at the tops of the trees. We also now have a state lichen. But recent research on lichen sheds a new light on what this organism is all about.

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Reese Næsborg and Cameron Williams of UC Berkeley climbing an old-growth Douglas fir. Photo by Tonatiuh Trejo-Cantwell

New York Times Spotlights New League Research

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Redwoods are in the news this week, reminding the world once again that Earth’s tallest trees are truly ecosystems in their own right. Teeming with life from quite literally their roots to their highest leaves, the magnificent coast redwoods are home to hundreds of other species.

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Meet the Treetop Lichen

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Lichens contribute such beautiful colors to our redwood forests, growing elegantly on trees, fallen logs, and rocks. Each lichen you see is actually a symbiotic partnership — algae or cyanobacteria wrapped up in a fungal package. Thanks to canopy biologists Rikke Reese Næsborg, Cameron Williams, Marie Antoine, and Continued

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