• Parmeliella triptophylla (Ach.) Müll.Arg.
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Parmeliella triptophylla
© Robert Thompson
Parmeliella triptophylla
© Mike Simms
Parmeliella triptophylla
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Typically, this small, brown to greyish-brown scaly-lobed, epiphytic species is surrounded by a conspicuous black hypothallus. The edges of the small lobes bear numerous projections (isidia) that may be like sticks of coral, policemen’s truncheons or flappy like a pig’s ear. Discs are rare. Parmeliella triptophylla is a species of tree boles and branches, occurring in western Ireland in woodland habitats with a long continuity. It is most frequently seen on ash, though may also be found on more acid tree species such as oak. It is a lichen whose algal partner, Nostoc, gives it a bluish tinge.

Key characteristics

  • The grey-brown colour, bluish tinge, small size, specialised habitat, isidiate lobe edges and black hypothecium should mark it out as distinctive
  • Parmeliella parvula is smaller, consisting of a paler blue to reddish-brown thallus and lacks the black hypothallus. Pannaria conoplea is always a much paler blue and also has a definite lobed margin.

Original text submitted by Simon Davey

 Simms, M. J., (2016). Parmeliella triptophylla (Ach.) Müll.Arg.. [In] LichenIreland. Accessed on 2018-08-16.