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Jelly Lichen

Collema sp.

a jelly fungus looking like blobs of tar on a boulder, Collema, photo © by Michael Plagens

Growing on the surface of granite boulders in Hells Gate Canyon, Heiroglyphic Mts., Yavapai Co., Arizona. March 2011.

Jelly Lichen that looks like shiny pieces of tar Winter temperatures in the Sonoran Desert are typically mild allowing lichens and other soil and rock crust organisms to flourish. The variety is stunning and indeed the importance in terms of soil formation and cycling of nutrients is high. Looking like bits of fresh tar spattered on shady boulder surfaces, jelly lichens belonging to the genus Collema are among them. There are several similar species recorded.

Collemataceae -- A Lichen Family

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Copyright Michael J. Plagens, page created 6 July 2012