For our May meeting, we're going to learn about lichens, which are fascinating, and all too often overlooked. As we're about to find out, lichens are really just fungi that took a different evolutionary path by developing an appetite for algae and cyanobacteria. Also, they can be pretty cute to look at.
In our area, and to my eye, the top three on ascetics alone include: 1) Cladonia Cristatella, better known as British Soldiers because of their scarlet red apothecia which makes them look a little like revolutionary war era British infantry; 2) Graphis Scripta, which looks as if someone were practicing calligraphy on the side of a tree, and; 3) Cladonia Pyxidata, which kinda looks like it could've been used as a goblet by those mythological and diminutive woodland creatures, pixies. As an aside, I think we had a lot more imagination, and time to notice the little things, before we invented the internet.
Matt Nelsen, a postdoctoral researcher at the Field Museum, will be our lecturer. Matt studies how fungi have shaped, and have been shaped by, the evolution of terrestrial ecosystems.
- If you'd like to participate in a carpool, as either a driver or passenger, please go to the carpool application to try to find other participating MAW members.