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Grazing damage in the old forest lichen Lobaria pulmonaria increases with gastropod abundance in deciduous forests

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  03 August 2010

Steinar VATNE
Department of Ecology and Natural Resource Management, Norwegian University of Life Sciences, P.O.Box 5003, NO-1432 Ås, Norway.
Torstein SOLHØY
Department of Biology, University of Bergen, P.O.Box 7803, NO-5020 Bergen, Norway.
Department of Ecology and Natural Resource Management, Norwegian University of Life Sciences, P.O.Box 5003, NO-1432 Ås, Norway.
Department of Ecology and Natural Resource Management, Norwegian University of Life Sciences, P.O.Box 5003, NO-1432 Ås, Norway.


Gastropod abundance was quantified in forest litter around 33 trees harbouring Lobaria pulmonaria in southern Norway. In total, 1709 snails representing 28 species were found, and the number of snail species strongly increased with the total number of specimens found. Number of snail species, as well as snail abundance, was highest around trees on high pH soils. There was a positive relationship between number of snail specimens and cover of grazing traces on L. pulmonaria, presumably because calcareous soils facilitate both litter dwelling and climbing gastropods. The results suggest that gastropods may limit the distribution of L. pulmonaria in calcareous broad-leaved forests.

Research Article
Copyright © British Lichen Society 2010

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