Shawnee Gowan at MSU – Crustose lichen ID 101

DSCN8499M.S. student Shawnee Gowan is spending a week at the Michigan State University Herbarium (MSC) working with Dr. Alan Friday on crustose lichen ID.  The MSU collections are first class and total nearly 110,000 accessioned lichen specimens from many regions of the world, including excellent specimens Dr. Henry A. Imshaug made from nunataks in the Juneau ice field in the 1960s. The gilts of her visit can be summarized by Alan’s quote from his page:

“My background is in microbiology so I was always more at home with the precise microscopic measurements and observations necessary to identify crustose lichens rather than the variable, morphological characters of macrolichens. In fact, I still don’t ‘get’ macrolichens and find them difficult to identify (Usnea is a complete mystery to me). Give me a good spore to measure any day.”

Go Shawnee, looking forward to hearing about all your new skills and expertise gained. Thanks to Alan Fryday and Alan Prather for making this trip possible through the MSU endowment funds.

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