Ethnolichenology of the World

PART I:  A brief look at lichens and people
       Folk taxonomy of lichens
       Lichen mythology
       Uses of lichens by people
       Variation within a lichen species
       Lichens as medicine
       Lichens as food
       Lichens as dye

PART II:  An inventory of lichen species that are used by people
       Lichens A-M
       Lichens N-X and unidentified lichens
       Index of lichen names


       Table 1:  Preparation methods of lichens used as food by people
       Table 2:  A summary of studies on the nutritional composition of lichens
       Table 3:  A summary of lichens being used as dyes

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PART II: An inventory of lichen species that are used by people


    All lichens are listed alphabetically according to their scientific name.  If there is information about lichen uses that is general across a genus, or if the exact species used is unknown, this information is entered under the heading Genus spp. and is placed before all other entries of that genus.  There are some lichens recorded in ethnographic literature of unknown genus, and these are entered at the end of the list.
    There are many synonyms in the naming of lichens.  Ethnographic literature is often very inconsistent in the names used for various lichens.  To attempt to reduce confusion, all lichens were named according to the following works, in order of preference:
    Brodo et al. (2001): Only deals with selected North American species
    McCune (2000): Only deals with North American Usnea species
    Esslinger (1997): Only deals with North American species
    DePreist (2002): Only deals with Cladonia species
    CABI Bioscience Databases (2001): All species, but synonyms incomplete

Lichens A-M

Lichens N-X and unidentified lichens

Index of lichen names

A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z Unidentified

Alectoria spp.
Alectoria fremontii [syn. Bryoria fremontii]
Alectoria jubata
Alectoria nigricans ["Gray witch's hair"]
Alectoria nitidula [syn. Bryoria nitidula]
Alectoria ochroleuca ["Green witch's hair"]
Alectoria sarmentosa ["Witch's hair"]
Anaptychia spp. ["Fringe lichens"]
Anaptychia ciliaris [syn. Physcia ciliaris]
Arctoparmelia centrifuga ["Concentric ring lichen"; syn. Parmelia centrifuga, Xanthoparmelia         centrifuga]
Aspicilia calcarea [syn. Urceolaria calcarea??, Lecanora calcarea]
Aspicilia cinerea ["Cinder lichen"; syn. Urceolaria cinerea??, Lecanora cinerea]
Aspicilia esculenta ["Manna Lichen"; syn. Lecanora esculenta]
Aspicilia fruticulosa
Aspicilia jussufii
Aspicilia vagans

Bacidia spp. ["Dot lichens"]
Borrera furfuracea
Bryocaulon divergens ["Northern fox hair"; syn. Cornicularia divergens]
Bryoria spp. ["Bear hair", "Witches' Hair"]
Bryoria capillaris ["Gray horsehair lichen"; syn. Alectoria capillaris, Alectoria  setacea, Alectoria         implexa]
Bryoria fremontii ["Black tree lichen"; syn. Alectoria fremontii; partial syn. Alectoria jubata]
Bryoria nitidula ["Tundra horsehair lichen"; syn. Alectoria nitidula]
Buellia subsoriroides

Caloplaca murorum [syn. Caloplaca saxicola]
Caloplaca saxicola [syn. Caloplaca murorum]
Candelariella vitellina ["Common gold speck lichen"]
Cenomyce chlorophaea Flörke ex Sommerf [syn. Cladonia chlorophaea (Flörke ex Sommerf.)
Cenomyce stellaris Opiz [syn. Cladina stellaris (Opiz) Brodo]
Cetraria aculeata ["Spiny heath lichen"; syn. Coelocaulon aculeatum, Cornicularia aculeata]
Cetraria crispa [syn. Cetraria ericetorum subsp. ericetorum, Cetraria islandica subsp. crispa]
Cetraria cucullata [syn. Flavocetraria cucullata]
Cetraria ericetorum ["Iceland lichen"; partial syn. Cetraria crispa]
Cetraria fahlunensis [syn. Melanelia commixta]
Cetraria glauca [syn. Platismatia glauca]
Cetraria islandica ["Iceland Lichen", "Iceland Moss"]
Cetraria juniperina [syn. Lichen juniperinus]
Cetraria nivalis [syn. Flavocetraria nivalis]
Cetraria pinastri [syn. Vulpicida pinastri]
Cetrariella delisei ["Snow bed Iceland lichen"; syn. Cetraria delisei]
Chrysothrix chlorina ["Sulfur dust lichen"; syn. Lepraria chlorina]
Cladina spp. ["Reindeer lichen"; partial syn. Cladonia spp.]
Cladina aberrans (Abbayes) Hale & W. L. Culb. [syn. Cladina stellaris (Opiz) Brodo]
Cladina arbuscula ["Reindeer lichen"; syn. Cladonia arbuscula, Cladonia sylvatica]
Cladina mitis ["Green reindeer lichen"]
Cladina rangiferina (L.) Nyl. ["Gray reindeer lichen"; syn. Cladonia rangiferina (L.) F. H.
        Wigg., Lichen rangiferus L. (em. Ach.)]
Cladina stellaris (Opiz) Brodo ["Star-tipped reindeer lichen"; syn. Cenomyce stellaris Opiz,
        Cladonia alpestris
(L.) Rabenh., Cladonia stellaris (Opiz) Pouzar & Vezda;  syn. with Cladina
var. aberrans (Abbayes) Ahti are: Cladina aberrans (Abbayes) Hale & W. L. Culb.,
        Cladonia aberrans
(Abbayes) Stuckenb., Cladonia alpestris f. aberrans Abbayes]
Cladonia spp. [Pixie cup lichens]
Cladonia aberrans (Abbayes) Stuckenb. [syn. Cladina stellaris (Opiz) Brodo]
Cladonia alpestris (L.) Rabenh. [syn. Cladina stellaris (Opiz) Brodo]
Cladonia arbuscula [syn. Cladina arbuscula]
Cladonia chlorophaea (Flörke ex Sommerf.) Spreng. ["Mealy pixie-cup"; syn. Cenomyce
Flörke ex Sommerf.; Cladonia pyxidata subsp. chlorophaea (Flörke ex Sommerf.)
        Schaer.; Cladonia pyxidata var. chlorophaea (Flörke ex Sommerf.) Flörke]
Cladonia coccifera (L.) Willd. [syn. Lichen cocciferus L.; likely syn. genera Pyxidium,
, Scyphophorus, Scyphophora]
Cladonia fimbriata (L.) Fr. ["Trumpet lichen"; syn. Cladonia major, Lichen fimbriatus L.]
Cladonia gracilis (L.) Willd. ["Smooth Cladonia"; syn. Lichen gracilis L.]
Cladonia miniata G. Mey. [??syn. Cladonia sanguinea Eschw.]
Cladonia pyxidata (L.) Hoffm. ["Pebbled pixie-cup"; syn. Lichen pyxidatus L.; likely
        synonymous genera: Pyxidium, Scyphiphorus, Scyphophorus, Scyphophora]
Cladonia pyxidata subsp. chlorophaea (Flörke ex Sommerf.) Schaer [syn. Cladonia pyxidata
        var chlorophaea (Flörke ex Sommerf.) Flörke; Cladonia chlorophaea (Flörke ex Sommerf.)
Cladonia rangiferina (L.) F. H. Wigg. [syn. Cladina rangiferina (L.) Nyl.]
Cladonia sanguinea Eschw. [??syn. Cladonia miniata G. Mey.]
Cladonia stellaris (Opiz) Pouzar & Vezda [syn. Cladina stellaris (Opiz) Brodo]
Cladonia sylvatica [syn. Cladina arbuscula]
Cladonia vermicularis (Sw.) Th. Fr [??syn. Thamnolia vermicularis (Sw.) Schaer.]
Coelocaulon aculeatum [syn. Cetraria aculeata]
Cornicularia divergens [syn. Bryocaulon divergens]

Dactylina arctica ["Arctic finger lichen"]
Dermatocarpon miniatum ["Common stickleback", "Leather lichen"]
Dictyonema spp.
Diploschistes scruposus ["Crater lichen"; syn. Urceolaria scruposa]

Evernia spp.
Evernia mesomorpha ["Boreal oak moss lichen"]
Evernia prunastri ["Oak moss lichen"]
Evernia furfuracea [syn. Pseudevernia furfuracea]
Everniastrum cirrhata [syn. Parmelia cirrhata]

Flavocetraria cucullata ["Curled snow lichen"; syn. Cetraria cucullata]
Flavocetraria nivalis ["Crinkled snow lichen"; syn. Cetraria nivalis]
Flavoparmelia caperata ["Common green shield lichen"; syn. Parmelia caperata,
        Pseudoparmelia caperata
Flavopunctelia soredica ["Speckled greenshield"; syn. Parmelia soredica, Parmelia
, Parmelia manshurica, Punctelia soredica]

Gyrophora cylindrica [syn. Umbilicaria cylindrica]
Gyrophora dillenii [syn. Umbilicaria mammulata]
Gyrophora deusta [syn. Umbilicaria deusta]
Gyrophora esculenta [syn. Umbilicaria esculenta]
Gyrophora muehlenbergii [syn. Umbilicaria muehlenbergii]
Gyrophora proboscidea [syn. Umbilicaria proboscidea]
Gyrophora velea [syn. Umbilicaria velea]

Haemotomma ventosum [syn. Ophioparma lapponica in North America]
Heterodermia diademata ["Cupped fringe lichen"; syn. Anaptychia diademata]
Hypogymnia physodes ["Monk's hood lichen"; syn. Parmelia physodes]

Lasallia spp. ["Toadskin lichen"]
Lasallia pustulata [syn. Umbilicaria pustulata]
Lecanora calcarea [syn. Aspicilia calcarea]
Lecanora cinerea [syn. Aspicilia cinerea]
Lecanora parella [syn. Ochrolechia parella]
Lecanora tartarea [syn. Ochrolechia tartarea]
Lepraria chlorina [syn. Chrysothrix chlorina]
Lepraria iolithus ["Dust lichen"]
Letharia vulpina ["Wolf lichen"; syn. Evernia vulpina]
Leptogium spp. ["Jelly skin lichens"]
Lichen cocciferus L. [syn. Cladonia coccifera (L.) Willd.]
Lichen fimbriatus L. [syn. Cladonia fimbriata (L.) Fr.]
Lichen gracilis L. [syn. Cladonia gracilis (L.) Willd.]
Lichen pyxidatus L. [syn. Cladonia pyxidata (L.) Hoffm.]
Lichen rangiferus L. (em. Ach.) [syn. Cladina rangiferina (L.) Nyl.]
Lichen vermicularis Sw. [syn. Thamnolia vermicularis (Sw.) Schaer.]
Lobaria amplissima (Scop.) Forssell (syn. Sticta amplissima?? Ask Goward, Lobaria laciniata)
Lobaria oregana ["Lettuce lichen", "Lettuce lung"; syn. Sticta oregana]
Lobaria pulmonaria ["Lungwort", "Lung lichen"; syn. Sticta pulmonaria, ??Sticta pulmonacea,
        ??Lobaria pulmonacea]
Lobaria scrobiculata ["Textured lungwort"; syn. Sticta verrucosa]

Melanelia acetabulum [syn. Lichen acetabulum, "Parmelia acebatulum", Parmelia acetabulum]
Melanelia commixta [syn. Cetraria commixta, Cetraria fahlunensis]
Melanelia olivacea ["Spotted camouflage lichen"; syn. Parmelia olivacea]
Melanelia stygia ["Alpine camouflage lichen"; syn. Parmelia stygia]

Nephroma arcticum ["Arctic kidney lichen", "Green light"]
Nephroma parile ["Powdery kidney lichen"]

Ochrolechia oregonensis ["Double rim saucer lichen"]
Ochrolechia parella [syn. Lecanora parella]
Ochrolechia tartarea ["Cudbear"; syn. Lecanora tartarea, Lichen tartarea]
Ophioparma lapponica [syn. Haemotomma ventosum in North America]

Parmelia spp.
Parmelia abessinica Kremp.
Parmelia acetabulum (Neck.) Duby [syn. Parmelia acebatulum [sic], Melanelia acetabulum]
Parmelia borreri [syn. Parmelia borreria [sic], Punctelia borreri]
Parmelia camtschadalis (Ach.) Eschw. [syn. Parmelia kamptschadalis [sic], Xanthoparmelia
Parmelia caperata [syn. Flavoparmelia caperata]
Parmelia centrifuga [syn. Arctoparmelia centrifuga]
Parmelia cirrhata [syn. Everniastrum cirrhatum]
Parmelia conspersa [syn. Xanthoparmelia conspersa]
Parmelia furfuracea [syn. Pseudevernia furfuracea]
Parmelia hyporysalea
Parmelia kamtschadalis [sic] [syn. Parmelia camtschadalis, Xanthoparmelia camtschadalis??]
Parmelia olivacea [syn. Melanelia olivacea]
Parmelia omphalodes ["Smoky crottle"]
Parmelia paraguariensis  [syn. Parmelia paraguariensi [sic]]
Parmelia parietina Ach.
Parmelia perforata [syn. Parmotrema perforatum]
Parmelia perlata [syn. Parmotrema chinense]
Parmelia physodes [syn. Hypogymnia physodes]
Parmelia sancti-angelii Lynge [??syn. Parmotrema sancti-angelii]
Parmelia saxatilis ["Salted shield lichen", "Crottle"; syn. Lichen saxatilis]
Parmelia saxicola
Parmelia stygia [syn. Melanelia stygia]
Parmelia sulcata ["Hammered shield lichen"]
Parmelia tinctorum [syn. Parmotrema tinctorum]
Parmotrema chinense ["Powdered ruffle lichen"; syn. Parmelia perlata]
Parmotrema perforatum ["Perforated ruffle lichen"; syn. Parmelia perforata]
Parmotrema sancti-angelii (Lynge) Hale [??syn. Parmelia sancti-angelii]
Parmotrema tinctorum [syn. Parmelia tinctorum]
Peltigera spp.
Peltigera aphthosa ["Common freckle pelt", "Pelt lichen"]
Peltigera britannica ["Flaky freckle pelt"]
Peltigera canina ["Dog lichen"]
Peltigera horizontalis ["Flat fruited pelt"]
Peltigera membranacea ["Membranous dog-lichen"]
Peltigera neopolydactyla ["Carpet pelt"]
Peltigera polydactyla
Peltigera venosa ["Fan lichen"]
Pertusaria spp. ["Wart lichens"; syn. Variolaria spp.]
Pertusaria amara ["Bitter wart lichen"; syn. ??Variolaria faginea, Variolaria amara,
        ??Pertusaria faginea]
Pertusaria communis [syn. Pertusaria pertusa]
Pertusaria corallina [syn. Buellia disciformis, Pertusaria areolata]
Pertusaria discoidea [syn. Variolaria discoidea, ??Pertusaria albescens]
Pertusaria pertusa [syn. Pertusaria communis]
Pertusaria pseudocorallina [syn. Pertusaria microstictica]
Physcia spp. ["Rosette lichens"]
Physcia pulverulenta [syn. Physconia distorta]
Physconia distorta ["Frost lichen"; syn. Physcia pulverulenta, Physconia pulverulacea,
        Physconia pulverulenta
Platismatia glauca ["Varied rag lichen", "Ragbag"; syn. Cetraria glauca]
Pseudocyphellaria aurata ["Green specklebelly"; syn. Sticta aurata]
Pseudocyphellaria crocata ["Yellow specklebelly"; syn. Sticta crocata]
Pseudevernia furfuracea ["Antler lichen"; syn. Evernia furfuracea, Borrera furfuracea,
        Parmelia furfuracea
, and Lichen furfuracea]
Punctelia borreri [syn. Lichen borreri Sm., Parmelia borreria [sic], Parmelia borreri]

Ramalina spp.
Ramalina bourgeana
Ramalina calicaris
Ramalina cuspidata [syn. Ramalina polymorpha]
Ramalina farinacea ["Dotted Ramalina"]
Ramalina fastigiata
Ramalina fraxinea
Ramalina polymorpha [syn. Ramalina cuspidata??, Ramalina siliquosa, Ramalina breviuscula,
        Ramalina scopulorum
var. incrassata]
Ramalina scopulorum
Rhizocarpon geographicum ["Yellow map lichen"]
Roccella spp. ["Orchil lichens"]
Roccella fuciformis ["Orchil lichen"; syn. Roccella fuciformia [sic], Lichen fuciformis]
Roccella montagnei ["Orchil lichen"]
Roccella phycopsis ["Orchil lichen"]
Roccella tinctoria ["Orchil lichen"; syn. Lichen roccella]

Scyphophorus cocciferus [syn. Cladonia coccifera??]
Scyphophorus pyxidatus [syn. Cladonia pyxidata??]
Solorina crocea ["Orange chocolate chip lichen"]
Stereocaulon himalayense
Stereocaulon paschale ["Easter lichen"]
Sticta spp. ["Moon lichens", "Crater lichens"; partial syn. Lobaria spp.]
Sticta amplissima [??syn. Lobaria amplissima]
Sticta aurata [syn. Pseudocyphellaria aurata]
Sticta crocata [syn. Pseudocyphellaria crocata]
Sticta glomerulifera [syn. "Sticta glomulerifera"]
Sticta pulmonaria [syn. Lobaria pulmonaria]
Sticta pulmonacea [??syn. Lobaria pulmonaria]

Teloschistes flavicans ["Powdered orange bush lichen"]
Teloschistes parietinus [syn. Xanthoria parietina]
Teloschistes vermicularis
Thamnolia vermicularis (Sw.) Schaer. ["Whiteworm lichen"; syn. ??Cladonia vermicularis
        (Sw.) Th. Fr.; Lichen vermicularis Sw]

Umbilicaria spp. ["Rock tripes"]
Umbilicaria cylindrica ["Fringed rock tripe"; syn. Gyrophora cylindrica]
Umbilicaria deusta ["Peppered rock tripe"; syn. Gyrophora deusta, Gyrophora flocculosa]
Umbilicaria esculenta [syn. Gyrophora esculenta]
Umbilicaria mammulata ["Smooth rock tripe"; syn. Gyrophora dillenii]
Umbilicaria muehlenbergii ["Plated rock tripe"; syn. Gyrophora muehlenbergii]
Umbilicaria proboscidea ["Netted rock tripe"; syn. Gyrophora proboscidea]
Umbilicaria pustulata [syn. Lasallia pustulata]
Umbilicaria vellea ["Frosted rock tripe"; syn. Gyrophora velea]
Urceolaria calcarea [??syn. Aspicilia calcarea]
Urceolaria cinerea [??syn. Aspicilia cinerea]
Urceolaria scruposa [syn. Diploschistes scruposus]
Usnea spp.
Usnea barbata
Usnea californica [partial syn. Usnea ceratina]
Usnea ceratina ["Warty beard lichen"; partial syn. Usnea californica]
Usnea dasypoga [syn. Usnea filipendula]
Usnea densirostra [previously misidentified as Usnea hieronymi]
Usnea diffracta
Usnea filipendula ["Fishbone beard lichen"; syn. Usnea dasypoga, has been misidentified in
        North America as Usnea plicata]
Usnea florida
Usnea hieronymi
Usnea hirta ["Bristly beard lichen"; syn. Usnea variolosa]
Usnea lacunosa
Usnea longissima ["Methuselah's beard lichen"]
Usnea plicata
Usnea scabrata [may be syn. to Usnea barbata in North America]

Variolaria spp. [syn. Pertusaria spp.]
Variolaria discoidea [syn. Pertusaria discoidea]
Variolaria faginea [??syn. Pertusaria amara]
Variolaria orcina [??syn. Pertusaria spp.]
Vulpicida canadensis ["Brown-eyed sunshine lichen"; partial syn. Cetraria juniperina]
Vulpicida pinastri ["Powdered sunshine lichen"; syn. Cetraria pinastri, Cetraria caperata]

Xanthoparmelia camtschadalis (Ach.) Hale ["Rock shield lichen"; ??syn. Parmelia
Xanthoparmelia chlorochroa ["Tumbleweed shield lichen"; syn. Parmelia chlorochroa]
Xanthoparmelia conspersa ["Peppered rock shield"; syn. Parmelia conspersa]
Xanthoria candelaria ["Shrubby sunburst lichen"]
Xanthoria parientina ["Maritime sunburst lichen", "Wall lichen"; syn. Teloschistes parientinus,
        Physcia parientina
, Lichen parietinus]

Unidentified lichens, black and yellow
Unidentified lichen, earth flower
Unidentified lichens, general lichens in Europe
Unidentified lichens, growing on white pine
Unidentified lichen, New Zealand
Unidentified lichens, orange and yellow crustose
Unidentified lichen, pyrenocarpous
Unidentified lichens, southern Mexico
Unidentified lichen, "white moss"
Unidentified lichen, yellow saxicolous

Lichens A-M
Lichens N-X and unidentified lichens


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