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Abstract Detail

Bryology and Lichenology

Chandler, Amanda [1], Sell, Emma [2], Allen, Jessica [1].

A Preliminary Checklist of Lichens from Kamiak Butte County Park, Washington State, USA.

The semiarid Palouse ecoregion of North America, once dominated by temperate prairies, connects parts of southeast Washington, north-central Idaho, and northeast Oregon. Transformation of nearly all of this ecosystem into agricultural lands has reduced extant native grasslands to highly fragmented areas. This conversion, as well as the subsequent takeover by invasive grass species, has placed the Palouse ecoregion among the most critically endangered ecosystems in the United States, with less than 1% of land remaining in a natural state. The enormous loss of biodiversity in the Palouse ecoregion has prompted a need for further study. An important component of biodiversity in the Palouse ecoregion that is not currently well understood is lichen diversity. To advance our knowledge of lichen diversity in the Palouse ecoregion, we reviewed historical collection data and collected lichens from Kamiak Butte County Park. Ill-suited for agriculture, Kamiak Butte County Park is one of few protected areas within the Palouse ecoregion. This locality consists of an east-west ridgeline with steep North and South-facing slopes, as well as basalt and granite outcrops. Elevation here reaches a maximum of 3,640 feet (110 m) and spans 298 acres of forest and grassland sitting above the surrounding farmland. A surprising number of historical lichen collections exist from the park, with the earliest dating back to 1913. Notable lichenologists who collected from Kamiak Butte include A. Herre and H. Imshaug. We collected lichens in the Fall of 2018 and Winter 2019 from a representative sampling of habitats and substrates throughout the park. Presently, 124 species have been identified. Of those species, 62 were found by previous collectors but not in the current study, and 23 were found both historically and in the present study. We identified 37 species that have not been reported previously in the park. The most frequently collected species include Letharia vulpina, Evernia prunastri, Hypogymnia tubulosa, Hypogymnia imshaugii, and Parmelia hygrophila. The four most diverse genera in the park are Rhizocarpon, Lecanora, Usnea, and Cladonia. Rhizocarpon cookeanum, a rare species in Washington, was also found. Overall, our survey has added to the knowledge of lichen species diversity in the ecologically endangered Palouse region. The current data, along with the abundance of historical data may lead to interesting conclusions about the impacts of changing climate and land use on lichen biodiversity.

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1 - Eastern Washington University, Biology, 258 Science Building, Cheney, Washington, 99004, United States
2 - Eastern Washington University, 258 Science Building, Cheney, Washington, 99004, United States


Presentation Type: Poster
Session: P, Bryology and Lichenology Posters
Location: Arizona Ballroom/Starr Pass
Date: Monday, July 29th, 2019
Time: 5:30 PM This poster will be presented at 5:30 pm. The Poster Session runs from 5:30 pm to 7:00 pm. Posters with odd poster numbers are presented at 5:30 pm, and posters with even poster numbers are presented at 6:15 pm.
Number: PBL005
Abstract ID:598
Candidate for Awards:None

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