Wildpad's picture

'Old Man's Beard'

Observed: 6th April 2012 By: WildpadWildpad’s reputation in Fungi and Lichens
'Old Man's Beard'
'Old Man's Beard'

The whole of this dead tree was draped with this lichen. A very unusual sight (for me!)


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.


synan's picture

Difficult, but probably not impossible

Neil Sanderson, an expert in New Forest lichens, might be able to identify this from the photo alone, given its pendulous and profuse growth form. I wish I could!


Wildpad's picture


Thank you synangium. It was a first for us, and amazing to see the whole tree covered in it! We did not realise at first that there were several types, but will now take up your information and pursue further.

AlanS's picture

"Usnea barbata"

The name "Usnea barbata" has been used in Britain in the dim and distant past for three different pendulous lichens: U. dasypoga (filipendula), U. articulata and U. ceratina.

U. articulata can be the most spectacular and I think much of the Usnea on this tree could well be this, but a closer view is needed.

There is some probable U. ceratina (but could be U. dasypoga) to the right in the second photograph, but I think the thicker of the pendulous branches elsewhere in the photographs are a little too robust for U. ceratina or dasypoga.

I suspect that most of this is U. articulata, but "Usnea sp." is undoubtedly the safest ID.