Lichens are composite organisms comprising a fungus (usually an ascomycete), an alga and/or cyanobacterium. Over 600 species of lichens have been recorded in the Outer Hebrides and they will eventually be the subject of a separate website. A small number of lichen species are described and illustrated in the Hebridensis website.
Relatively little is known about the fungi of the Outer Hebrides and most records have been generated by specialists on short visits to the islands, particularly to St Kilda. The most comprehensive work is a summary of the collections made over a thirty year period by RWG Dennis (Fungi of the Hebrides, 1986).
We began to have a serious look at fungi in the autumn of 2010 and so far have photographed and identified over 430 species. This site is a catalogue of the species we have recorded and contains photographs taken in the field together with images of their microscopic structure. Information on their distribution is available via the National Biodiversity Network Atlas Scotland.
Over 860 species have been recorded in the Outer Hebrides (based on records submitted to the National Biodiversity Network) but this list is not comprehensive as it does not include records submitted to the British Mycological Society after 2007 and species in museum herbaria or reported in the literature. As the fungi of the archipelago is seriously under-recorded there is still a great deal to discover.
The Myxomycota (slime moulds) and Oomycota (includes Phytophthora, Pythium, and downy mildews) were originally classified as fungi but are now included in the Protista. They have been included with the fungi on this website for convenience.