Substrate and habitat. Aquatic, saxicolous in high quality streams (cool, clear, silt-free) with rocky beds in partly shaded environments.
Distribution. Appalachian mountains of eastern North America (typical variety only); in North Carolina found in the Blue Ridge ecoregion.
Note. This lichen is distinct as a fully aquatic species and an indicator of water quality. Here described at the species level, molecular evidence has split it into three taxa, currently recognized as varieties: aquatica, gowardii and the typical variety (McCune & Stone 2022). Varieties aquatica and gowardii are present in the Pacific Northwest of North America and are considered cryptic species, only distinguishable by DNA analysis.
Hinds, J.W. & P.L. Hinds (2007) The Macrolichens of New England. Memoirs of the New York Botanical Garden No. 96. New York Botanical Garden Press, Bronx, New York. 584 pp.
Lendemer, J. C. & H. E. O'Brien (2011) How do you reconcile molecular and non-molecular datasets? A case study where new molecular data prompts a revision of Peltigera Hydrothyria s.l. in North America and the recognition of two species. Opuscula Philolichenum9: 99-110.
McCune, B. & D.F. Stone (2022) Eight New Combinations of North American Macrolichens. Evansia39(3): 123-128.