Hardy lichens occupy the highest reaches of the rocky coast, where they receive coatings of sea spray. Lichens are a partnership between fungus and algae or bacteria. Few lichens survive on coastal rocks, but those that do, such as Xanthoria ligulata (upper photo) and the crust-forming species (lower photo), are common around the country.
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Te Ara - The Encyclopedia of New Zealand
Photograph by Melanie Lovell-Smith
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