Lichen Identification Workshop
Date: Thursday, January 28, 2016
Time: 9:00AM - 3:00PM
Instructor: Shelly Benson
Location: Blakesley Library
Interested in lichens? Do you want to know what they are, where they grow, how they reproduce, and how to identify them? This is the workshop for you! Shelly Benson, Sonoma Co lichenologist, will lead this exploration into the lichen world. In this introductory class you will learn the basics of lichen biology and ecology. We will focus on recognizing the various lichen structures that are used in identification. We will use dichotomous keys, chemical spot tests, and dissecting microscopes to identify lichens to the genus-level. The workshop structure includes a classroom lecture, a short field trip, and lab time to identify lichens. Bring a hand lens, bring a lunch, and if you have any unidentified lichens—bring them too!
Shelly Benson is the president of the California Lichen Society (CALS) and has been studying lichens for the past 18 years. She received a Master of Science degree in 2001 from the University of Northern British Columbia, Canada, where she studied lichen ecology in the tree tops of old growth forests. She worked on several lichen inventories in the San Francisco Bay Area and has led numerous lichen walks for CALS. Shelly is interested in using lichens as indicators for air quality and climate change.