Why should we care about lichen?
Lichen specialist Troy McMullin takes us through them in the Gatineau Park.
Lichens may seem trivial at first glance, but they are an essential link in the health of ecosystems.
In particular, they serve as food for woodland caribou during the winter and as nesting material for birds. Their vulnerability to air pollution also makes them excellent indicators of air quality and global warming.
Canada has 2,500 species, but few can to distinguish them. One of the few lichenologists in the country, Troy McMullin, has been studying them since 2005. In Gatineau Park, he shows us the beauty and importance of these small organisms.
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