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Dear UCSB, My partner and I are conducting a science fair research project on Lichen and how it can be used to date man-made stone structures, Particularly Knapp's Castle in Santa Barbra. We were wondering if elevation affects Lichen growth?
Answer 1:

Elevation itself does not affect lichen growth but certain plants/lichens will only be found within a specific elevation range. But if you are wondering if you take a rock with lichen on it from one elevation to another elevation, unless you are dealing with alpine (higher than 10,000 feet) plants you won't see an effect from elevation change. Another aspect to look at can be success growth, such as which types of lichen are most likely to colonize bare rock and which lichens will colonize only rocks with other types of lichen on them (think of a forest after a fire, plants that show up first a small annual, then shrubs and finally trees).



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