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The new genus Sinuicella, an early successional lichen, was found on bare soil in Oregon, USA. The thallus is minute fruticose, grey to nearly black, branching isotomic dichotomous, branches round, 20–90 μm wide in water mount. The cortex is composed of interlocking cells shaped like jigsaw puzzle pieces. Spores are hyaline, 1-septate, 25–40(–50) × 6.5–9(–11) μm. Maximum likelihood phylogenetic analyses on multilocus data sets, first spanning the entire order Peltigerales and then restricted to Peltigeraceae with extended sampling from Solorina and Peltigera, revealed the placement of Sinuicella outside of currently recognized genera, sister to Peltigera, with high support. Based on the phylogenetic, morphological and ecological distinctness of Sinuicella, we formally introduce a new genus represented by the single species S. denisonii. The cyanobiont of S. denisonii is Nostoc from phylogroup XL, Clade 2, Subclade 3 based on the rbcLX marker.
Rhizocarpon quinonum McCune, Timdal & Bendiksby is described as a new species from two sites in Katmai National Park, south-western Alaska, in a suboceanic climate near the limit of trees on the Alaska Peninsula. Most similar in external appearance to R. arctogenum, R. bolanderi, R. leptolepis, and R. rittokense, the species is distinguished by the presence of an anthraquinone as a major substance. Mature apothecia are unknown, but ITS sequences are most similar to those of R. copelandii and R. jemtlandicum, although those species differ greatly in morphology from R. quinonum.
Hypogymnia papilliformis McCune, Tchabanenko & X. L.Wei is described as a new species of lichenized fungus from the Primorsky region of Russia and Shaanxi Province in China. It is a relatively rare species from mixed conifer-broadleaved forests in suboceanic climates, in mountainous areas at elevations of 600–1500 m. Most similar to H. delavayi, the species are distinguished by branching pattern and chemistry. Hypogymnia papilliformis is predominantly isotomically branched while H. delavayi usually develops subpinnate branching. The ceiling of the lobe cavity is mid brown to dark brown in H. papilliformis, while the ceiling is often pale brownish or white in H. delavayi. Also, H. papilliformis lacks 3-hydroxyphysodic acid, and thus has a K– medulla, while H. delavayi always contains 3-hydroxyphysodic acid as a major substance and is thus K+ slowly reddish brown. We provide a key to the six esorediate Hypogymnia species known from the Russian Far East.
Nylon mesh litter–bags markedly reduced the rate of weight loss of lichen litter, as compared to unconfined (free) lichens, suggesting that herbivores and detritivores larger than the mesh size make a significant contribution to the disappearance of lichen litter. The half–life of free lichen litter was 1·5 months for Alectoria sarmentosa, 2·5 months for Hypogymnia inactiva, 3·5 months for Platismatia glauca, and 7 months for Lobaria oregana. The half–lives were 2·9 times longer for the same species in litter–bags. Because A. sarmentosa showed the greatest difference between free litter and litter–bags, we conclude that, of the four species studied, it had the highest rate of consumption by larger herbivores and detritivores.
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