Lecanographa insolita is a rare species that is endemic to coastal areas of central and southern California where it is known from only scattered localities and threatened by multiple factors.
Lecanographa insolita is endemic to coastal central and southern California where it is known from only a small number of scattered sites.
Demographic studies are needed to assess and monitor populations sizes. Populations are currently presumed to be stable, although one is known to have been extirpated by fire, extant populations may represent remnants of a once larger range in the region.
Population Trend: Stable
Lecanographa insolita occurs primarily on non-calcareous rocks on sunny, dry west-facing slopes with to regular fog immersion near the coast. I also occurs on non-calcareous rocks in deep shade in coastal forests with high relative humidity from perennial streams.
Historical activities including large scale conversion of natural habitats, intensive grazing, logging, mining, and recreation have led to habitat degradation throughout the region where this species occurs. Current threats include further conversion of natural habitats, habitat shifts/alteration due to climate change, air pollution, road/utility construction and maintenance, recreation and other activities that significantly disturb fragile soil crust communities. An additional threat is increased frequency and intensity of wildfires that have already extirpated one known population.
Conservation actions that can be taken including educating and training land managers and local botanists to identify the species so we can monitor its health as well as contracting experts to conduct detailed monitoring at various time intervals (every 5 to 10 years), federally listing the species as endangered in the United States, and restoration of the habitats in which the species occurs. Further conservation of lands where existing populations occur, and intensive searches of inaccessible coastal areas, are also needed.
Further research that will aid in the conservation of this species includes intensive searches for additional extant populations, population assessments and monitoring, population genetics studies, and ecological studies that incorporate threats to the species. Additionally, a species recovery plan needs to be written.
J. C. Lendemer and K. Knudsen 2010: Lecanographa insolita, an unusual new species of Roccellaceae from western North America. - The Bryologist 113(2): 350-355.
Knudsen, K./ J. Kocourková 2012: The Annotated Checklist of Lichens, Lichenicolous and Allied Fungi of Channel Islands National Park. - Opuscula Philolichenum 11: 145-302.