Checklist of the Lichens of Australia and its Island Territories

Updated 12 April 2017

Slideshow of Australian Lichens

Also available:

J.A. Elix, A Catalogue of Standardized Chromatographic Data and Biosynthetic Relationships for Lichen Substances. Third Edition. Published by the author, Canberra (2014). Download pdf — 2 MB


Classification & Genus Descriptions | Largest Families and Genera

Recent Photographs (2010–2014)

Oceanic Islands | Foliicolous Lichens | Arid & Semi-arid Regions | Marine & Freshwater Lichens | References

The lichen flora of Australia and its island territories includes 3886 species and infra-specific taxa in 517 genera; 1390 taxa [36%] are thought to be endemic. The six States, together with the Australian Capital Territory and the Northern Territory, have 3677 taxa; 1308 [36%] are endemic. Australian oceanic islands in the Indian, Pacific and Southern Oceans support 608 taxa; 69 [11%] 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 3153 nomenclatural and taxonomic synonyms and names that have been misapplied to Australian specimens.

Names and other information added or updated in 2017 are green


Map of Australia
Cladia retipora

Cladia retipora © Bill Malcolm 2004

States, territories and regions Abbreviation Taxa Endemic
Australian Capital Territory ACT 499 12
Christmas Island CI 99 4
Heard Island HI 112 13
Lord Howe Island LHI 195 21
Macquarie Island MI 131 19
New South Wales NSW 1679 112
Norfolk Island NI 187 7
Northern Territory NT 327 12
Queensland QLD 1987 287
South Australia SA 572 32
Tasmania TAS 1229 135
Victoria VIC 1060 49
Western Australia WA 753 93


* Accepted name based on an Australian type specimen

[*] Taxonomic synonym based on an Australian type specimen

Cite as ...

McCarthy, P.M. (2017), Checklist of the Lichens of Australia and its Island Territories.
Australian Biological Resources Study, Canberra. Version 12 April 2017..


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
Australian Biological Resources Study, GPO Box 787, Canberra, A.C.T. 2601, Australia

Megalospora pauciseptata

Megalospora pauciseptata
© Bill Malcolm 2001

Pseudocyphellaria colensoi

Pseudocyphellaria colensoi
© Bill Malcolm 2001

Ramboldia haematites

Ramboldia haematites
© Bill Malcolm 2007



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