Books About Lichens:

Lichens of the North Woods by Joe Walewski  Lichens of the North Woods Easy to use, good pictures and a good size to carry with you on a hike. All the basic information you need to get started loving lichens. Over a hundred of the most common lichens in the north woods, but almost all are here too, making it very useful for KVR Lichen Hunters.

Lichens by William Purvis Lichens is not a field guide but more of a general tour of lichens history, human use, diversity, evolution, as well as the various environments you may find them in, their ecological roles, and some basic physiology. Suggestions for simple study projects with lichens and how to monitor them is included. Weblinks, books and a glossary complete this very useful book.

Michigan Lichens by Julie Jones Medlin is a small book I use often. A simple field guide of lichens also found in the KVR area, it complements the Lichens of the North Woods. Lichens are in alphabetical order by latin name making it harder to find the lichen image you want but the images are good and the descriptions are complete enough to make identification easier once you are familiar with the book.

Pollution Monitoring With Lichens by D. H. S. Richardson is a British publication. It is a good introduction to this topic for anyone interested in a bit of science. Even if you skip the chemistry, there is useful information on lichens and pollution.

Lichen Biology by Thomas Nash III describes lichen anatomy, biology, morphology and physiology. Their role in carbon and nitrogen fixing, mineral recycling, biogeography, and the importance of the secondary metabolites they produce, is explained. Lichen use for pollution monitoring is also discussed.

Lichens of North America is comprehensive and has gorgeous photos of lichens; a must- have book when you become fascinated with the lichens. Sharnoff also has a beautiful and very useful website, see link below.

Lichen Biology    by Thomas H. Nash III  for those with an interest in more details on anatomy, physiology, morphology, systematics and biogeography. If that’s not enough, chemistry of secondary metabolites and lichens’ contributions to human pharmaceuticals and industry is covered as well as their use as air pollution indicators.


UW Botany Department-Lichens   UW Madison Botany Department has one of the most extensive lichen collections in North America. If you want to see samples or talk to someone about lichens, this is the place.

Sharnoff Lichens images  has thousands of beautiful lichen photos. Browsing through these pictures is a great way to get familiar with lichen

Lichen information is the home page for Sharnoff’s lichen information. Pages of information on lichens and wildlife, the environment, and people, as well as more links to educational sites than we can list here, make Sharnoff’s page well worth visiting.

Consortium of North American Lichen Herbaria   a gateway to distributed data base resources

Discover Life – Lichen Identification Site   a key to identifying lichens, with pictures. Choose the characteristics of your lichen and continue through the questions to identify a lichen.

Opal Explore Nature  information on lichens and air quality, as well as and ID guide. Many other surveys too, of a wide variety of things from flatworms to metal. Based in the United Kingdom, it has info on lichens from all over the world.

Dr. M  information on student lichen explorations, and links to other lichen related pages.

Fun With Lichens From Oregon State University

A Guide to the Literature  lots of links to lichen related literature (and some alliteration!) that is a good site with lots of cool stuff on all sorts of plants besides lichens. well organized and extensive  lots of cool pictures and a good intro to what’s in that part of the world

Science Daily lichens in Alaska


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