National Mall and Memorial Parks

Permanent Lichen Biomonitoring Sites in NAMA

The National Mall and Memorial Parks includes some of the most famous an iconic federal sites in the NPS, including the Washington Monument, Lincoln and Jefferson Memorials, WWII, Korean War and Vietnam Veterans Memorials. Although very little natural forested vegetation exists in NAMA, cultivated trees harboring lichens are common throughout the area.

A single permanent lichen biomonitoring site was established at Hains Point in the Potomac River. The site was chosen to be as close as possible to the permanent IMPROVE air quality monitoring station on the roof of the National Capital Region Park Police Headquarters building. The IMPROVE monitoring program was initiated in 1985 to aid in developing Federal and State implementaton plans for the protection of visibility in Class I National Parks and Wilderness Areas. It has been expanded several times since. At each monitoring site, air quality data are collected to document longterm trends and monitor improvements in air quality.

At the Hains Point site, abundance of tree-inhabiting macrolichens was recorded and  a specimen of the common lichen Flavoparmelia caperata was collected for elemental analysis.

A link is available to this site, where all available data can be obtained. Summary data can also be obtained for all sites in the NCR.

NAMA map available from NPS

NCR Lichens Home


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