reindeer moss

(redirected from Cladonia rangiferina)
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Related to Cladonia rangiferina: reindeer moss, Cup lichen

reindeer moss:

see lichenlichen
, usually slow-growing organism of simple structure, composed of fungi (see Fungi) and photosynthetic green algae or cyanobacteria living together in a symbiotic relationship and resulting in a structure that resembles neither constituent.
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The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Reindeer Moss


any lichen of the genus Cladonia, including C. rangiferina, C. alpestris, and C. sylvatica. Sometimes only the first species is called reindeer moss. Because of their bushy, heavily branched layers, the lichens are occasionally separated into the genus Cladina. It provides good fodder for reindeer. Some species contain usnic acid, which has antibiotic properties.

The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.