oil on canvas,
54cm x 44cm,
Iain White, 2016,
Scree habitats, as here on Foinne Bheinn (Foinaven) consist of rock fragments covering the frost-shattered summits of mountains or accumulating on slopes below cliffs. The scree may be colonised by a range of pioneer species. It also provides shelter for many species sensitive to frost, such as parsley fern Cryptogramma crispa, species requiring a humid microclimate such as Wilson’s filmy-fern Hymenophyllum wilsonii, and species sensitive to grazing such as stone bramble Rubus saxatilis. This shelter is accentuated by prolonged snowlie in depressions providing insulation from frost.
The extensive screes and mountain top detritus on Foinne Bheinn (Foinaven) are highly acid, made up mainly of quartzite and are on the whole very species-poor. Nonetheless, there is a flora of Atlantic bryophytes associated with block screes at high altitudes while there is an important crustose lichen assemblage on the rocks. These important Atlantic bryophytes include Anastrophyllum donnianum, Bazzania pearsonii, Herbertus aduncus, Scapania nimbosa and Scapania ornithopodioides, many of which have a restricted world distribution.