Change ). It will not do well in areas high in pollution because it absorbs all the impurities from the surrounding areas. It retains plenty of water so the lichen stays fresh. The usnic acid content helps Reindeer to break down fat reserves during the winter months. The RH range of 40-60% is within the human comfort zone. Reindeer Moss is extremely high in Carbohydrates up to 94%, which the Reindeer need to provide the energy that keeps them warm. I'm just a nature enthusiast with two kids, trying to teach them to be the best humans they can be through spending time in nature and learning to utilize and preserve all of our environmental treasures and cultural history. As an adaptation for life in tough environments, lichens produce a wide array of biochemical compounds which serve to repel herbivores, kill microbes, and discourage competition for plants. Reindeer Moss is a carpet-forming lichen growing freely and abundantly in boreal and arctic regions around the circumpolar north. The lichen has been used by Scandinavians in a wide variety of areas, including as a filling material in wooden huts, as an ingredient in soups and desserts, and in Christmas decoration. Sw. renlav), grey reindeer lichen, or (misleadingly) reindeer moss, is a light-colored, fruticose species of lichen, belonging to the family Cladoniaceae.It grows in both hot and cold climates in well-drained, open environments. For humans, the high acidic content of lichens can cause an upset stomach if it is not well cooked. The usnic acid content helps Reindeer to break down fat reserves during the winter months. In 2014, the founders of Nordgröna, then students at Lund University in Sweden, discovered the lichen’s outstanding ability to absorb sound. Reindeer moss is composed of 94% carbohydrates. A hard lichen indicates a relative humidity level of 40% or below, and a very soft lichen a level of 60% or above. Foraging this Wild Coast of North Carolina. Cladonia rangiferina, also known as reindeer lichen (cf. C. subtenuis is called Dixie Reindeer Moss. Change ), You are commenting using your Twitter account. Although we occasionally do find a little poop in our harvest! The lichen can cover immense areas, and as the common names suggest, serve as pasture for reindeer, moose, caribou and musk oxen in their winter habitats. The lichen is picked in a checkerboard pattern, and only from parts above a specified length in order to allow for the best possible conditions for regrowth. Reindeer in the area in which our lichen is collected from are rare as their habitats are further up north. The lichen will retain its shape, colour and texture. It naturally fixes nitrogen in the soil and can break down rocks to form new soil. Change ), You are commenting using your Google account. Reindeer Moss contains high amounts of carbohydrates and vitamins A and B, and is low on protein. This is why it is important to boil it several times in clean water with a bit of baking soda or wood ash to help stabilize the acid. View all posts by Thomas Smith. Picking lichen requires a governmental permit and approval of landowners, which include forestry companies, municipalities, and private individuals. Other common names are deer moss and caribou moss, however these names may be misleading since it is actually a lichen, not a moss. The information contained on this page is intended for educational purposes only, as well as to provide general information. The lichen covers immense areas in northern tundra and taiga ecosystems and serves as pasture for reindeer, moose, caribou, and musk oxen. It is estimated that 6% of Earth’s land surface is covered by lichens! evansii — named after North Carolina botanist Alexander W. Evans — has no official common name but it is called Powder Puff Lichen. To use it as a flour, dry it completely, after having boiled it multiple times to remove the acid, and grind it into a flour consistency. ( Log Out / Lichens do not have roots and absorb water and mineral nutrients from the air.