The first volume of a world Flora of lichenicolous fungi published by the National Museum of Natural History in Luxembourg. The principal author Paul Diederich is a research associate at the museum.
Lichenicolous fungi form obligate associations with lichens that are parasitic nature, as opposed to lichenized fungi that are essential components of lichens. It is estimated that here are many thousands of species of lichenicolous fungi, with 2000 or so already described among the Ascomycota and Basidiomycota. Having been somewhat neglected by both lichenologists and mycologists in the past, over the last few decades there has been increasing interest in these fungi.
This volume is the first of a planned series each treating one taxonomic group of lichenicolous fungi.
The first volume features members of the lichenicolous Basidiomycota, which represent less than 5% of lichenicolous fungi. The largest class covered is the Tremellomycetes, and within that the order Tremellales. Non lichenicolous members of this ‘jelly fungus’ order will already be known to many readers with less specialist interests, e.g. Tremella mesenterica ( yellow brain fungus) and Tremella reticulata.
Descriptions and illustrations of all known species are included, and many newly taxa described. Phylogenetic analyses and trees, identification keys, descriptions, macroscopical and microscopical illustrations and distribution maps are given as well as an index. The work covers 197 species in Agaricales (4), Atheliales (2), Boletales (1), Cantharellales (11), Corticiales (12), Filobasidiales (8), Tremellales (129), Agaricostilbales (18), Cyphobasidiales (9), Microbotryomycetes (1) and incertae sedis (2), including three new genera (Kriegeriopsis, Parmeliicida, Zyzygomyces), 74 new species, one new subspecies and three new combinations.
The production quality of the book is very high, with a clear layout and precise descriptions, complemented throughout by excellent colour photographs of both macro and micro morphological features. English language text and Latin names
The stated main aim of the flora by the authors ‘is to allow amateur and professional lichenologists to recognise, collect and identify lichenicolous fungi, to contribute to the overall knowledge of of fugal diversity and to promote discovery of the many yet unknown species’.