A Liking for Lichen

Last week I spent my time wandering around woodlands learning about the Lichens that are associated with out Atlantic Hazel Woodlands. Along side the Assynt Field Club, we were joined by Andy Acton of the British Lichen Society for a pretty intense 5 days of Lichens. Atlantic Hazel Woodlands are classed as Hazel (Corylus avellana) that grows on the oceanic areas of the West Coast, dubbed the ‘Celtic rainforest’ as they are so green and great for biodiversity. Nearly every centimetre of bark is covered with some type of lichen or moss, creating a wonderful mosaic on the multi-stemmed hazels. Because this is such a special habitat, some of the lichens can be found nowhere else in the world. Although they are some of our most Ancient habitats they are under recorded as a woodland type and hence the biodiversity (including the lichens) is also under recorded. Hazel Woodlands are important for a whole range of associated species but in recent years their condition has suffered, for a variety of reasons. For example, we know that in some areas old

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