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Extra resources for A Field Guide to Biological Soil Crusts of Western U.S. Drylands
Nodulosa occurs exclusively on gypsiferous soils. It co-occurs with other gypsophiles such as Psora decipiens and Fulgensia bracteata, along with a very diverse assemblage of mosses and other lichens. It could be confused with other large white lichens with dark apothecia, such as Psora cerebriformis, Diploschistes diacapsis, and Lecanora gypsicola. Acarospora nodulosa var. nodulosa is clearly squamulose with lobate squamules and large, flat, immersed, brown-black apothecia. Psora cerebriformis has a brain-like, hemispherical thallus and small, convex, black apothecia.
Apothecia redbrown, large, usually immersed in the thalli with round to irregular disks but occasionally somewhat prominent with lecanorine margins, with a roughened appearance. Spores dozens to hundreds per ascus, single-celled, colorless, ellipsoid to spherical. Photobiont green (Trebouxia). Habitat: On soils, often found growing in close association with Diploschistes muscorum or D. scuposus. Acarospora occasionally grows on Diploschistes, stealing the algal photobiont for itself and parasitizing the Diploschistes.
Margins sometimes absent, concolorous with the thallus. Spores 8 per ascus, single-celled, small. Photobiont green (Trebouxia). Habitat: Shortgrass prairie, often on non-calcareous soils and organic matter. Chemistry: All spot tests negative. Comments: This species can be common in some sites and can form a continuous cover in pristine sites. It is very vulnerable to trampling. Aspicilia filiformis and A. californica (K+ red) are similar but have more distinct lobe tips and are not common in the Colorado Plateau region.