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26 April 2013 Epiphytes as “filter-drinkers”: life-form changes across a fog gradient
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Abstract

Harvesting of fog water by epiphytes is biomechanically analogous to filter-feeding by aquatic invertebrates. Increased branchiness, as measured by fractal dimensionality, should reflect greater fog-harvesting ability. We documented changes in epiphytic macrolichens across an altitudinal gradient in fog availability in a coastal shrubland in northern Chile. Fruticose and foliose genera appear to become more abundant with increased fog availability. Fractal dimension of fruticose and foliose lichens increased significantly with inferred fog availability. The adaptive morphology of lichens is under-studied, and insights from theoretical morphology of other organisms yield fruitful hypotheses for further studies.

The American Bryological and Lichenological Society, Inc.
Daniel E. Stanton and Henry S. Horn "Epiphytes as “filter-drinkers”: life-form changes across a fog gradient," The Bryologist 116(1), 34-42, (26 April 2013). https://doi.org/10.1639/0007-2745-116.1.034
Received: 7 December 2011; Accepted: 1 November 2012; Published: 26 April 2013
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