MASSIMO BREGA, THE LIGHTHOUSE / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY MASSIMO BREGA, THE LIGHTHOUSE / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Common orange lichen. Person removing a sample of common orange lichen (Xanthoria parietina) from a rock. Lichens are symbiotic organisms formed of a fungus and an alga that mutually benefit one another. The alga is contained within the hyphae (filaments) of the fungus. They are therefore protected from harsh conditions, and in particular from dessication. The alga supplies the fungus with nutrients that it makes by photosynthesis.
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