Natural History Society of Maryland
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Natural History Society of Maryland

Lichens 101: Biology, Ecology and Diversity

  • 29 Oct 2022
  • 10:00 AM - 3:00 PM
  • 6908 Bel Air Rd, Natural History Society of MD
  • 15

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This workshop will introduce participants to lichen biology, ecology, and diversity.  We will start the workshop in the classroom with an introduction to lichens and a discussion of some of the ways and places that lichens grow. Then we will go on a short walk with an introduction to some of the common lichens of Maryland and a demonstration of how to collect, label, and store specimens. Then we will spend the next 2 hours in the lab, viewing the features of the lichens we’ve collected under the microscopes and using keys to identify them. Participants will also have the option to bring their own specimens to identify. Participants should bring walking shoes and outdoor clothes appropriate to the weather as this event will take place rain or shine. We will provide hand lenses for participants to observe the lichens in the field (but we encourage you to bring your own if you have one!) and microscopes will be available in the lab.

Natalie Howe has been studying lichens with high or low intensity for the past 14 years, and currently lives in Washington DC.  She is a Biological Scientist at the U.S.D.A., and an adjunct teacher of Mushrooms, Molds, and Society class at George Mason University. In the pre-covid times, she was volunteering with the lichen team at Patuxent Research Refuge in MD, Rock Creek Park in DC and at Liberty State Park in NJ to document the lichens there. For her dissertation research at Rutgers University in New Jersey, she studied the ecology of lichens in the NJ Pinelands.

Recommended text: Urban Lichens: A Field Guide for Northeastern North America Paperback – November 23, 2021 – by Jessica L Allen (Author), James C Lendemer (Author), Jordan R Hoffman (Illustrator). Purchase is optional. Copies will be available during the class for reference. 

NHSM reserves the right to apply and/or change any and all COVID related policies based on the public health landscape at the time of the course. We appreciate your understanding.

The Natural History Society of Maryland is a 501(c)(3) non-profit corporation and contributions are tax-deductible.

The mission of the Natural History Society of Maryland is to foster stewardship of Maryland’s natural heritage by conserving its natural history collections, educating its citizenry, and inspiring its youth to pursue careers in the natural sciences.


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