Checklist of the Lichens of Australia and its Island Territories

Updated 7 March 2023

Slideshow of Australian Lichens

Also available:

J.A. Elix, A Catalogue of Standardized Chromatographic Data and Biosynthetic Relationships for Lichen Substances. Sixth Edition. Published by the author, Canberra (2022). Download pdf — 2.2 MB


Miscellaneous Photographs (2010–2014)

Oceanic Islands | References

The lichen flora of Australia and its island territories includes 4088 species and infra-specific taxa in 502 genera; 1495 taxa are thought to be endemic. The six States, together with the Australian Capital Territory and the Northern Territory, have 3858 taxa; 1370 are currently endemic. Australian oceanic islands in the Indian, Pacific and Southern Oceans support 662 taxa; 84 are endemic.

This checklist has links to more than 2000 illustrations, mostly colour photographs by Bill Malcolm, Alan Archer, Jack Elix and Neil McCracken, photographs and line-art by Pat McCarthy, and habit and anatomical photographs by Armin Mangold. Click on the camera icons or hyperlinks to view the images. In addition, there are links to about 2200 taxon descriptions, many with distribution maps. The checklist also contains more than 3100 nomenclatural and taxonomic synonyms and names that have been misapplied to Australian specimens.


Map of Australia
Cladia retipora

Cladia retipora © Bill Malcolm 2004

States, territories and
oceanic islands
Abbreviation Taxa Endemic
Australian Capital Territory ACT 543 15
Christmas Island CI 119 8
Heard Island HI 110 12
Lord Howe Island LHI 226 30
Macquarie Island MI 142 20
New South Wales NSW 1809 155
Norfolk Island NI 211 11
Northern Territory NT 347 23
Queensland QLD 2042 298
South Australia SA 678 36
Tasmania TAS 1368 170
Victoria VIC 1120 46
Western Australia WA 768 85


* Accepted name based on an Australian type specimen

[*] Taxonomic synonym based on an Australian type specimen

Cite as ...

McCarthy, P.M. (2023), Checklist of the Lichens of Australia and its Island Territories.
Australian Biological Resources Study, Canberra. Version 7 March 2023.


I am especially grateful to the late Lyn Jessup for preparing the keys for online delivery, redesigning the site and teaching me how to maintain it. I also thank Alan Archer, Louise Biggs, Alan Bolin, Ian Cresswell, Rex Croft, Judith Curnow, Richard Droker, Jack Elix, Andreas Frisch, Christy Geromboux, Cécile Gueidan, Robert Ingram, Gintaras Kantvilas, Paul Kirk, Brigitte Kuchlmayr, Naomi Lawrence, Robyn Lawrence, Simone Louwhoff, Thorsten Lumbsch, Bill Malcolm, Armin Mangold, Tom May, Helmut Mayrhofer, Neil McCracken, Roland Moberg, Paul Murray, Dag Øvstedal, Laurens Sparrius, Val Stajsic, Alice Wells and Greg Whitbread.

Patrick M. McCarthy
c/- Australian Biological Resources Study (ABRS), GPO Box 3090, Canberra ACT 2601, Australia

Megalospora pauciseptata

Megalospora pauciseptata
© Bill Malcolm 2001

Pseudocyphellaria colensoi

Pseudocyphellaria colensoi
© Bill Malcolm 2001

Ramboldia haematites

Ramboldia haematites
© Bill Malcolm 2007



This work is copyright. Apart from any use as permitted under the Copyright Act 1968, no part may be reproduced by any process without prior written permission from Australian Biological Resources Study. Requests and inquiries concerning reproduction and rights should be addressed in the first instance to ABRS. These pages may not be displayed on, or downloaded to, any other server without the express permission of ABRS.