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DescriptionThallus: composed of rounded, coarse granules, usually well developed, covering the surface of the substrate, forming a continuous crust, more rarely immersed; granules: ecorticate, +globose, often rather scattered, intensely greenish yellow; outermost part of the granules: densely inspersed with minute, yellow crystals; photobiont: trebouxioid; Apothecia: developing from the lower side of the thalline granules, 0.6-1.3 mm tall, 10-22 times as long as the width of the stalk; stalk: 0.04-0.08 mm in diam., black to pale brown, with a yellow pruina, at least in the upper part; capitulum: obovoid or broadly obconical, 0.16-0.27 mm in diam.; exciple: well developed, with dense yellowish green pruina on the lower side; hypothecium: broadly obconical with flat or slightly concave upper surface; asci: produced singly from ascogenous hyphae with hooks, cylindrical, 14-19 x 2-3.5 µm, with a 5-9 µm long, narrow stalk; with uniseriate spores; ascospores: non-septate, short ellipsoid to globose, 7-9 x 4-5 µm, with a coarse and irregular ornamentation; Anamorph: hyphomycetous; conidia: one-celled, 2-3 x 1 µm; Spot tests: thallus K-, C-, KC-, P-; Secondary metabolites: apothecial pruina and thallus with vulpinic acid.; Substrate and ecology: on bark and wood or sometimes roots, of conifers (particularly Picea, Larix, and Pinus), on Abies lasiocarpa, less often birch, oaks, and other trees, in mixed forests; World distribution: cold-temperate to temperate areas of both the Northern and Southern Hemispheres in Europe, Asia, North, Central and South America; Australasia, and Africa; Sonoran distribution: Arizona at 1750 m.; Notes: Although variable in apothecial size and thallus development, Chaenotheca chrysocephala is characterized by a bright greenish yellow thallus, a yellow pruina on the apothecia, its middle-sized apothecia, and its non-catenulate asci. The spores are rather small, spherical to ellipsoid, and have a coarse ornamentation.