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Friday, November 21, 2008

Mushroom Mania 1

All day today the winds have been roaring away, and for a change it actually feels like we live on a boat. Our marina is so protected that most of the time it's easy to forget we have a floating home, but during these fall wind storms the waves pick up enough that we feel the rocking motion. Check out Jason's blog for some cool info on just how strong the winds have been! Jason's a local kayak guide and co-owner of Discovery Sea Kayaks here in Friday Harbor, and posts some great photos and video from his kayak adventures.

Anyway, over the last couple of weeks I have gone on four "mushroom hunts" and taken photographs of as many species as I could find. Some of the recent rains have caused a lot of mushrooms to pop up, and finding some cool specimens on a hike piqued my interest and it's become a new mini-obsession to look for them wherever I go. So far, on the four walks I've taken specifically to look for mushrooms, I've found over 25 species.

When I get a better field guide I plan to make a few more posts, but for now here's a sampling that shows the sheer diversity of fungus that can be found in the local woods. They range in size from barely an inch long to larger than a dinner plate; some are flat, others tall and skinny, some more stereotypical with a stem and bell on top; brown, white, red, orange, they come in any color; found on the ground, up in trees, or growing on dead wood - an amazing variety of mushrooms!


Lancashire and Lakeland Outback Adventure Wildlife Safaris said...

Hi again. Fourth pic down looks very much like our Lawyer's Wig aka Shaggy Ink Cap (Coprinus comatus) - if so it is very tasty when eaten at this stage with the insides still pink (either raw or gently fried in garlic butter..not so appetising when they have begun to autolyse. Also fascinating to see how many species we have in common despite our two areas being an ocean and continent apart. young Jack's Lancashire Nature blog has some excellent fungi pictures

The K said...

Ahh, one of my favorite photo subjects -- fungus. I'm no expert and have learned that id can be hard, especially just form a picture. Need to look at gills, spores, nearby trees. My fungus friend always told me if you can't identify it, it's probably just another species Russula.

Here's my take on the six pictures from top to bottom:

Purple Club Coral
Shaggy Mane
King Stropharia or Emetic Russula
Witches Butter

Great pictures you've got.

The K said...

I'm changing my mind on the first one -- make that Fairy Fingers. They're not purple and look more like baen sprouts.

Monika said...

The K - Thanks so much for the IDs. I had shaggy mane and witches butter but none of the others. I'll have to borrow some of your fungi resources.

Dave - I think shaggy ink cap is another name for shaggy mane, as The K ID'd it. It is amazing how many species we have in common! I guess for birds or oceanic species it might make more sense but the fact that there are mushrooms in common too is pretty darn cool.

Vickie said...

Hi Monika. I can't make a contribution to ID's but have always loved finding mushrooms. You have some nice photos here.

Anonymous said...

It's almost December and there are still some good edible mushrooms out there. Yesterday, I found some Chantrelles and Boletes at Larabee State Park.