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A new Bunodophoron species (Sphaerophoraceae, Lecanorales) from the Neotropics

  • Edier SOTO MEDINA (a1), Maria PRIETO (a2) and Mats WEDIN (a3)

This is the first part of an ongoing taxonomic treatment of Bunodophoron (Sphaerophoraceae, Lecanorales) in the Neotropics, based on the molecular phylogenetic analysis of three markers together with studies of morphology and chemistry, and using the general mixed Yule coalescence (GMYC) method to delimit species boundaries. In the Neotropics, species in this genus grow on the ground or on shrubs in the páramos, and as epiphytes in the montane rainforests. We describe here a new species from the páramos of Colombia, Bunodophoron crespoae Soto, M. Prieto & Wedin sp. nov., and discuss its distinction from another large and common páramo species Bunodophoron flabellatum (Hue) Soto, M. Prieto & Wedin comb. nov. Both species are primarily terrestrial in the páramos, although B. flabellatum may occasionally also grow as an epiphyte. Bunodophoron crespoae is characterized by the white, c. 10–13 cm long, subterete to narrowly flattened, main branches. It differs from the otherwise similar B. flabellatum by being distinctly subterete, more abundantly branched, and by having smaller ascospores. Both are distinguished from the primarily epiphytic B. melanocarpum by the considerably larger thallus size, with the main branches of B. melanocarpum rarely exceeding 3·5 cm in length and 2 mm in width.

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