mp6967's picture

Crutose lichen

Observed: 1st December 2009 By: mp6967
S159 Neighbourhood Nature - course complete
DSC00836   Crustose lichen with black spots
DSC00840 context of above

Grey lichen with black spots on window ledge


Caution: Do NOT use iSpot to identify fungi to eat!

Some fungi are very poisonous so a mistaken ID could have serious consequences.

Species interactions

No interactions present.


gardener's picture

Unfortunately there are many

Unfortunately there are many crustose lichens that can look like this and lens, chemicals and microscope can be needed to identify them with certainty.

mp6967's picture

lichen id

Thanks for your comments Jenny, this is all new to me. Will try to key them.

gardener's picture is great for photographs but as many lichens occur in specific habitats it is a good idea to then try and check details of possible visual identifications.

The LichenIreland website has details and photographs for many species (and more being added) so you can check descriptions and habitat details.

Their distribution maps are for Ireland but you can check UK distribution by using the NBN Gateway

Sarah West's picture

Try this...

You could try looking at (Key to Nature), although it only has 29 crustose lichens. As Jenny says though, crustose lichens are notoriously hard to ID, especially through photos. If you are interested in learning more about lichens you could get in touch with the British Lichen Society and see if there is someone locally that would be willing to help you?

You're in "my" OPAL region, so if you want me to try and organise a lichen ID course locally, let me know....

My contact details can be found at

Sarah West
OPAL Community Scientist
Yorkshire and Humber

mp6967's picture

OPAL region

Hi Sarah, at the moment things are a little hectic but thank you for your help and I'll remember your offer; I might have more time to do something in my area after the end of January. We seem to have a good range of lichen here. The links you've given are really helpful.