Translated from Rense Haveman and Iris de Ronde in the Netherlands:
Usnea flavocardia lichen comeback
Monday, August 29, 2011
During the inventory of the vegetation on the military training ground Joost Dourleinkazerne on Texel in a young dune grassland 19 specimens of the lichen Usnea flavocardia, which was presumed to be extinct, have been found. The find was extra special because the lichen was found on the ground. Normally it grows on tree branches and trunks.
Usnea flavocardia in the last one hundred years had been found only once before, in 1991 in a swamp in Soerendonk in North Brabant province. Usnea flavocardia had also been seen a few times in the first decade of the twentieth century.
The part of the training area where this rarity is found is not used by the military. It consists of very young dunes, which grew after 1995 on the Hors, the broad sandbar on the south side of Texel. Nature can develop here freely. Besides the pioneer grasslands, where Usnea flavocardia grows, very species rich wet dune valleys are present as well. By the action of wind and water there are all sorts of valuable transitions between wet and dry, sweet and salty habitats, in which many plants and animals feel at home.
See also here.
The surprisingly toxic world of lichens: here.
September 2011: Home to some of Britain’s rarest plants, the sand dune is finally becoming the focus of a pioneering three-year conservation project: here.