Friday, October 14, 2011

Fungus Photos from Buttermilk Falls

Many thanks to Don Cox for the tour of his property, which includes not only woodland trails and open areas, but a marsh and beaver pond connected by the picturesque little falls.

Despite the different appearance of the caps, I think both of the following photos depict groups of Meadow Mushrooms (Agaricus campestris). As their name implies, this species favours open grassy places.

By far the most common species in the wooded areas are Big Laughing Gym (Gymnopilus spectabilis), the caps of some of these photogenic fungi exceeded 10 cm in diameter.

A lone cup fungus about 25 mm across, Peziza sp. (possibly Peziza repanda?) found growing near one of the groups of Honey Mushrooms. Many species of Peziza are difficult to distinguish from one another in the field.

The shore of the marsh was home to several Fly Agaric (Amanita muscaria, var. formosa). The larger of the two mushrooms in the picture below was about 8 cm across, but some were much bigger, about the size of a large saucer.

Blewit (Clitocybe nuda) prefers higher, drier, more open places along the shoulder of the highway. It seems that chipmunks, squirrels and insects have been taste testing these mushrooms so they are a little rough around the edges. The picture can't do justice to the delicate violet color of the gills.

The ubiquitous Marasmius oreades shares the same grassy habitat as the Blewit. Often called the Fairy Ring Mushroom, the common name can be confusing as this species doesn't always form rings, and other kinds of mushrooms can and do grow in rings.