Field of Science

April 2014 Desktop Calendar

This moss and lichen combo is from my trip last month to Yosemite National Park. I only did photographic collecting and I am still improving my California identifications, thus I was planning to post this calendar without species identifications. But after this weekend's SOBEFREE (a spring outing in California for professionals to head out into the field to observe, collect, and identify bryophytes) I am ready to take a guess.

From the photo this bryophyte appears to be Orthodicranum tauricum. This species may remind you a bit of Dicranum. They both have narrow thin leaves and upright stems. Unlike Dicranum, the leaves of Orthodicranum point in many directions. In Dicranum the leaves are falcate (meaning sickle-shaped) and secund (all pointed in the same direction). It gives Dicranum one of it's common names, broom moss. It looks like the floor has just been swept using a stem and the leaves are now curved and pointing all in the same direction. But I wouldn't recommend it for floor sweeping. It would take way to long to get the chores done.

Anyone have any thoughts on an identification for the lichen? Lichenological books are no longer at my fingertips in my lab here in California, but it would be great to learn the genus or species if someone is familiar.

April Desktop Calendar
1 - Single click on the image to open it up in a new window. (If you use the image directly from the blog post you will lose a lot of resolution.)

2 - Right-click (or ctrl-click) on the image, and chose the option that says, "Set as Desktop Background" or "Use as Desktop Picture". The wording may vary.

3 - If the image does not fit your desktop neatly, you may have to adjust the image (Mac: System Preferences - Desktop and Screen Saver - Desktop; Windows: Control Panel - Display - Desktop) and choose "Fill screen" as the display mode of your background image.


  1. Check out the genus: Peltigera in the area. Cool photo!

  2. Thanks Miles! I am not sure how many Peltigera we have out here in California. Gives me a good reason to make a trip down to the library to check out a lichen book. Thanks for pointing me in a starting direction.


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