Wrinkled Shingle Lichen
Scientific Name: Pannaria lurida
Taxonomy Group: Lichens
Range: New Brunswick, Prince Edward Island, Nova Scotia, Newfoundland and Labrador
Last COSEWIC Assessment: April 2016
Last COSEWIC Designation: Threatened
SARA Status: No schedule, No Status
Image of Wrinkled Shingle Lichen
The Wrinkled Shingle Lichen, Pannaria lurida, is a leafy lichen forming patches or rosettes that can be up to 10 cm across. It almost always grows on the trunks of deciduous trees. The upper surface is brownish grey and wrinkled. The photosynthetic partner is a cyanobacterium.
Distribution and Population
The Wrinkled Shingle Lichen occurs in Asia, Australia, Pacific Islands, Africa, Asia and America. Three subspecies have been described. The subspecies that occurs in Canada and northeastern USA is reported to be subspecies russellii. There is a possibility that it could be a different subspecies, but no molecular work has been done to substantiate this. In Canada, the Wrinkled Shingle Lichen is known from 56 occurrences: 49 are in Nova Scotia, four are in New Brunswick, two in Newfoundland and one in Prince Edward Island. There may be undiscovered occurrences, particularly in Nova Scotia and possibly in New Brunswick or even Newfoundland.
The Wrinkled Shingle Lichen in Nova Scotia and New Brunswick colonizes mature deciduous trees, most often Red Maple that grow near, but not usually within, imperfectly drained habitats. Hence, this lichen is found on trees close to the edge of treed swamps or floodplains. The only occurrence on Prince Edward Island was on Cedar while the ones in Newfoundland are on White Spruce growing in an unusual habitat on cliffs close to the sea.
Fungal fruiting bodies are frequent on the Wrinkled Shingle Lichen and provide the only specialized means of reproduction. The spores ejected from the fruit bodies need to land on the trunk of a mature tree, germinate and encounter a compatible strain of the cyanobacterium Nostoc. Once enveloped by the fungus, the cyanobacterium, as a result of its ability to photosynthesize and fix atmospheric nitrogen, supplies the fungus with both carbohydrates and nitrogen. No specialized vegetative reproductive structures, which are common on many other lichens, are produced by the Wrinkled Shingle Lichen. However, fragmentation and reattachment of thalli may provide for very local dispersal on host tree trunks.
Threats calculator analysis indicated that the overall threat impact to P. lurida was “high to very high” with the major current threat being forest harvest resulting in both loss of host trees and changes in microclimate. The impact of forest harvesting for lumber, firewood, woodchips and biomass is particularly serious because this lichen typically colonizes trees after they have developed rough bark, which takes some 50 years post-harvest. The annual hardwood harvest in Nova Scotia doubled between 1990 and 2000 and is expected to continue with continued harvesting of deciduous trees. The same pattern of decline in the amount of old deciduous forest has also occurred in New Brunswick although most forestry activities are on upland mesic sites. Less serious threats to the Wrinkled Shingle Lichen are climate change, road construction, development, and pollution. A reduction in rain, longer periods of summer drought and less fog, all of which have been projected for Nova Scotia, could lead to reduced growth or death of the Wrinkled Shingle Lichen. Where road construction or development affects drainage leading to changes in humidity in surrounding or nearby woodland habitats, it may reduce growth or lead to death of the Wrinkled Shingle Lichen. Finally, this lichen is also sensitive to sulphur dioxide and acid rain. While the levels of both these have fallen in recent years, the continuing emissions may overcome the buffering capacity of the host tree bark, rendering it too acidic for this lichen to colonize.
Provincial and Territorial Protection
PLEASE NOTE: Not all COSEWIC reports are currently available on the SARA Public Registry. Most of the reports not yet available are status reports for species assessed by COSEWIC prior to May 2002. Other COSEWIC reports not yet available may include those species assessed as Extinct, Data Deficient or Not at Risk. In the meantime, they are available on request from the COSEWIC Secretariat.
4 record(s) found.
- COSEWIC Status Reports (1 record(s) found.)
- Response Statements (1 record(s) found.)
- COSEWIC Annual Reports (1 record(s) found.)
- Consultation Documents (1 record(s) found.)
COSEWIC Status Reports
COSEWIC Annual Reports
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