Easily mistaken for : many other
Stereocaulon species. Indeed, because the Author does not employ any chemical Spot-tests at all, he could easily have mis-identified it. But this is the one that many books claim is very common in hilly upland areas.
There are several varieties of Stereocaulon vesuvianum found natively in the UK:
which are all found in the Lake District, amongst many other hilly places. There are several other varieties found in the rest of the World.
- var. vesuvianum
- var. nodulosum
- var. symphycheileoides
There is no common name for these lichens in the UK save for Stereocaulon vesuvianum but in America they call them Vesuvius Snow Lichens.
Stereocaulon vesuvianum is mainly found on the top of dry-stone walls in the highlands and lowlands of the Lake District where it is very common, and throughout the UK. but it os probably not the only species of Stereocaulon to be found atop dry-stone walls.
Many other Stereocaulon species are found in the UK, amongst them:
- Stereocaulon condensatum (which is much more squat, <1cm)
- Stereocaulon dactylophylum (with many light-brown apothecia)
- Stereocaulon delisei
- Stereocaulon evolutum
- Stereocaulon glareosum
- Stereocaulon leucophaeopsis
- Stereocaulon nanodes
- Stereocaulon pileatum
In the UK there are dozens of differing species of Stereocaulon. The secondary metabolites found within the Stereocaulon genus are: the Depsides of Orcinol and
β-Orcinol, the Depsidones of Orcinol and β-Orcinol, and some
aliphatic acids. As such the Stereocaulon species were used to make orange and brown dyes. See also Lichen Dyes