Richard Davey sent me some pictures of a flycap [Amanita] that he collected under a pine plantation [Pinus radiata] on the western boundary of Otari-Wilton’s Bush reserve. I thought I knew all of the species of flycap in New Zealand but this I have not seen before. There is only one species of flycap, the scarlet flycap [Amanita muscaria], usually found under pine. This new yellow flycap was growing along with the scarlet flycap in the plantation.The distinctive features of the yellow flycap is the large, flat, membranous patches on the cap and the radial grooves (sulcation) on the edge of the cap. The other feature is the lack of a ring or annulus on the stem. For comparison see the scarlet flycaps significant ring in the first photo above. A feature of the genus Amanita is that the fruitbody forms inside an ‘egg’ which breaks up as the mushroom grows and expands. The way it breaks up is a characteristic of each species. In this case the ‘egg’ has broken to form the flat membrane on the cap and may also leave a rim of tissue around the top of the bulb which is at the base of the stem. An interesting feature is the presence of significant amount of the ‘egg shell’ on the stem. In the photo below there is some ‘egg shell’ sticking to the stem just below Richard’s thumb. This almost looks like a ring and in some species is so substantial it is often described as a pseudo-ring. When I visited the pine plantation and collected my specimens there were some young fruitbodies just breaking out of the ‘egg’ and there was no sign of a ring. The other photo Richard sent me shows again the membrane on the stem looking like a collapsed ring and the fragment of ‘egg shell’ around the rim of the stem’s basal bulb. For those of you who read beyond this post you might encounter the formal terms for the ‘egg’ which is the universal veil because it covers the entire fruit body. The ring or annulus is formally known as the partial veil because it only covers the gills on the underside of the cap.
So what is the yellow flycap? The closest I can find is a collection of species from the west coast of North America collectively referred to as Amanita gemmata var. exannulata – this is a working name rather than a real name. See the photo by Ryane Snow, taken in northern California, below for comparison.Clive Shirley, at The Hidden Forest, has a photo of something he suspects is Amanita gemmata. Clive’s fungus differs from this one in having a substantial and obvious ring on the stem.
If you see the yellow flycap please let me know.
Friday 16 May 2014
Slippery-jack bolete [Suillus luteus] – under pines on Pine Hill Path.
Slippery-jack bolete differes from sticky-bun bolete in having a ring on the upper part of the stem.
Scarlet flycap [Amanita muscaria] – under pines on Pine Hill Path.
Cloudy funnelcap [Clitocybe nebularis ] – Under pines with an under storey of regenerating bush near the junction of Junction Path and Serpentine Way.
Skull puffball [Calvatia craniiformis] – Under pines with an under storey of regenerating bush near the junction of Junction Path and Serpentine Way. Note that the outer surface has pealed away from the fruitbody to exposed the powdery dry mass of spores contained within.
Scarlet pouch [Leratiomyces erythrocephalus = Weraroa erythrocephala] – This is a native species which appears to have taken advantage of the trend to mulch gardens as can be seen here in the conifer shrubbery at the lower end of Pine Hill Path.
Ruby helmet [Mycena viscidocruenta] – This small red Mycena was growing on woodchips amongst the Scarlet pouches above.
Harefoot inkcap [Coprinopsis lagopus] – Growing in wood chip mulch in the fuchsia garden along Ludlam Way in the formal garden on Glenmore St.
Coral jelly [Tremellodendron sp.] – fruiting prolifically on the ground under sugar maple [Acer saccharum]
European beech [Fagus sylvatica]. This tough little coralloid fungus has persisted for several weeks and has a cartilaginous consistency and rounded rather than point tips to its extremities. To determine whether this identification it would require microscopic examination of the basidia i.e. the spore producing cells. These were growing at the end of Ludlam Way where it joins West Way.
Ivory conch [Conchomyces bursaeformis]– A fan shaped mushroom, no stem, growing from rotten wood. It can be white to yellowish and has white gills. The ivory conches were growing on the moss covered trunk of an English oak [Quercus robur] growing at the junction of Ludlam Way and West Way.
Sunday 18 May 2014
Yellow chanterelle [Cantherellus wellingtonensis] – This pretty little chanterelle was growing in big troops on the bank along Serpentine Way above The Dell. There was kanaka [Kunzea ericoides] growing at the slope above the bank. This is a Greta Stevenson species, as Hygrophorus variabilis, described from a collection made in the Botanic Garden in 1947.
A chalkcap [Russula macrocystidiata] – this single fruitbody was growing on the same bank as the yellow chanterelles on the bank along Serpentine Way above The Dell under kanaka [Kunzea ericoides] .
Blewit knight [Lepista nuda] – The blewit knight was growing at the edge of a gravel path and woodchip mulched conifer shrubbery on the slope above Pine Hill Path. Although faded the stipe and gills were purplish in colour.
A mushroom [Agaricus sp.] – This was in the mature pine stand but under a eucalypt just below Pine Hill Path.
A pinkgill some where around Entoloma distinctum – Growing under kanaka [Kunzea ericoides] on Manuka Way just below the MetService building.
A webcap somewhere near Cortinarius memoria-annae – Growing under kanaka [Kunzea ericoides] on Manuka Way just below the MetService building. Note the purplish colouring at the top of the stem and into the cap tissue.
Tea chalkcap [Russula novae-zelandiae] – Growing under kanaka [Kunzea ericoides] on Norwood Path leading down from the MetService building to the Lady Norewood Rose Garden.
Dusty flycap [Amanita nehuta] – The dusty flycap. a native Amanita, was growing under kanaka [Kunzea ericoides] on the slope above the Waterfall and Peace Garden near the Lady Norewood Rose Garden.
The distinctive powdery surface and radially grooved [= sulcate] margin of the cap [photo Helen Cairney].
Added 23 May 2014
Here are Edward Bower’s photo in the comments below.Post script 1 November 2014
Kaye Proudly contacted me (see below) on the similarity between the Agaricus I collected under eucalypts and Agaricus augustus that she has collected in Victoria, Australia.
16 May 2014
I have been report the fungi growing on a stump in the lower part of the park -see (2). The grounds have now been ‘tidied’ and several stumps including the one I was watching were ground and replaced with this top soil ready for grass seed.
A roundhead [Psathyrella sp.] – Roundheads are a regular feature of woodchip mulch. I think that there may be several very similar species and I think that this may be Psathyrella microrhiza as it has a rooting base to the stem with whitish hairs. It was growing on a grave on Strang Path.
Scarlet roundhead [Leratiomyces ceres = Stropharia aurantiaca] – The scarlet round head was growing on the same grave as the Psathyrella sp.
T.H. Fitzgerald Path and Observatory Path run parallel to each other down a gully filled with regenerating native bush. Here was:
Scarlet pouch [Leratiomyces erythrocephalus = Weraroa erythrocephala]
Bluing pouch [Psilocybe weraroa = Weraroa novae-zelandiae] – see here.
Olive honeycap [Armillaria novaezelandae] – Note the thick white spore deposit on the upper surfaces of the lower mushrooms.
Common deceiver [Laccaria laccata] – This was growing on grave with deep alder leaf litter behind the Seddon Memorial.
Another brilliant Sunday, 11 May 2014, at Otari-Wilton’s Bush. This is my fifth foray here this autumn and I am still finding species that I have not seen before.
Porcelain slimecap [Oudemansiell australis] and wood-ear jelly – These species were growing on dead karaka trees, read more here.
In the plant collection garden I made three collections of Psathyrella which I think represent three different species. The first was growing on woodchip mulch. The first is the red-edged roundhead [Psathyrella corrugis = Panaeolus sp. see here]. If you turn the cap upside down and look at the gill edges through a hand lens then the edges should look reddish-brown compared to the rest of the gill. I find it best to do this with sunlight on the gills.
The second species was also on woodchip with the caps a little more conical then the red-edged roundhead and the kill edges are the same colour as the rest of the gill and lack the reddish colouring. This appears very similar to Psathyrella conopila.
The third Psathyrella species was larger and growing in a crevice in the greywacky rock. However this bank had a woodchip mulched garden above and a woodchip mulched path below. This may be a native species.
Here are the three species black spore prints with the native Psathyrella species on the left, Psathyrella corrugis in the middle, and Psathyrella conopilaon the right.
This sturdy little parasol (Lepiota sp.) keeps turning up on the woodchip mulch but I still do not have a name for it.
This much bigger Lepiota was coming up in several clumps in the woodchips. It is the spiny parasol [Lepiota aspera] and I have only seen it once before growing in a chicken run in the Western Hutt hills
This little yellow mushroom was growing on the woodchip mulched path. It looks a bit like Leucocoprinus fragilissimus however that species has a ring on its stem and there was no sign of one here. [Note added 22 May 2014: I need to open my eyes as this specimen clearly has brown spores and puts this in Bolbitius and probably Bolbitius vitellinus.]
Weeping widow [Lacramaria lacrymabunda] – Growing on woodchips.
Ruby helmet [Mycena viscidocruenta] – This small red Mycena was growing on woodchips.
This is a species of Gymnopus. It looks very like a Californian species known as Gymnopus “stinkii” and the European Gymnopus brassicolens. It can be recognised by the brown caps with a very pale margin and tough blackish stems.
Charcoal flycap [Amanita nothofagi] – Beneath black beech [Nothofagus solandri].
Cocoa bolete [Tylopylus brunneus ] – Beneath black beech [Nothofagus solandri].
Red-flushed bolete [Xerocomus nothofagi] – The red-flushed bolete was growing under kanaka [Kunzea ericoides].
Hygrocybe blanda [orange waxgill] – growing in leaf litter in the fernery.
Brown-umbrella inkcap [Parasola leiocephala] – This big troop of brown-umbrella inkcaps were growing on woodchip under a dense clump of ferns.
Olive honeycap [Armillaria novaezelandae] – growing on a living tree in the Fernery.
A parasol [Lepiota sp.] – small pure white parasol found in the bush.
Tree swordbelt [Agrocybe parasitica]- The mushrooms are about 3 meters above the ground on tawa [Beilschmiedia tawa].
Bush shank [Heimiomyces neovelutipes] – growing on rotten wood.
Native shitake [Lentinellus novae-zelandiae] – This is the biggest fruiting of native shiitake that I have seen at Otari.
Cloudy funnelcap [Clitocybe nebularis ] at the base of a mamaku / tree fern [Cyathea medullaris] in a grove of mamaku.
Brown-blood helmet [Mycena mariae] – Growing on a dead branch. When the stem is broken it oozes a brown sap.
Jelly-stemmed helmet [Mycena austrororida] – Growing on a dead branch.
Blue-eyed helmet [Mycena interrupta] – Growing on a rotting log.
Orange poreconch [Favolaschia calocera]
Skull puffball [Calvatia craniiformis] – Growing in leaf litter.
Antrodiella zonata [= Irpex brevis] – This wood decay fungus forms small brackets or flat sheets on the underside of rotting logs. Hanging vertically from the brackets are square-ish flat teeth and it is on these teeth that the spores are produced.
And finally lichens growing on rocks in the alpine garden.
5 May 2014
The following three species were all growing in the grassy area defined by Carr and Madelay Paths, Governors Way and the Denis McGrath Bridge.
Black-olive bolete [Phlebopus portentosus = ] – This is the first time I have seen this species and Jerry Cooper directed me to the site as he found it here in May 2004. His find was a large bolete about 30cm in diameter. My find was of 5 smaller fruitbodies scattered over 9 square meters. It has a velvety surface and is olivaceous-black with an olive tube surface on the underside of the cap. When cut there may be a greenish blue reaction in the lower stem which is just perceptible in the bisected mushroom in the top right of the picture below.
Oak chalkcap [Russula sororia] – This chalk cap was growing quite densely und an oak [Quercus robur] but this was growing within the root zone of two old man pines [Pinus radiata]. I tastes a little of the gill tissue which, when chewed on the tip of the tongue, intensely hot so have a glass of water handy to rinse and spit.
Pine knight [Tricholoma sp.] – This species regularly collected under radiate pine [Pinus radiata] has been kicking around for many years as Tricholoma pessundatum and more recently Tricholoma stans. Molecular work done by Katrin Walbert could not establish this connection so it has become Tricholoma sp. for the moment.
Scarlet roundhead [Leratiomyces ceres = Stropharia aurantiaca]– see here for more information about this species. The fungus is growing on woodchip used to mulch the plot. This grave was on Strang Path.
Common scabbard [Volvariella gloiocephala = V. speciosa] – The common scabbard was growing on a plot that had been mulched with pea straw. It grave was on Robertson Way.
Wednesday, 23 April 2014
Oak chalkcap [Russula sororia] – The oak chalkcap was growing in a mixed species stand of exotic trees, at the junction of Ludlam and West Way. The stand included English oak [Quercus robur] which is its usual mycorrhizal associate.
Sunday, 27 April 2014
Fragrant parasol [Lepiota cristata] – The fragrant parasol was growing in rough lawn behind the Herb Garden on the hill behind the Lady Norsewood Rose Garden. I also saw it at Otari-Wilton’s Bush garden the same day (see here).
The following species were seen along the Pine Hill Path which runs from the main gates up the Glenmore slope through the conifer collection. There are many older trees planted on the slope which are now reaching the end of their life. There is also a collection of ornamental shrub forming conifers in a garden which has been mulched with wood chips.
A mushroom [Agaricus sp.] – This was in the conifer shrubbery but at the base of a eucalypt.
Scarlet pouch [Leratiomyces erythrocephalus = Weraroa erythrocephala] – This is a native species which appears to have taken advantage of the trend to mulch gardens.
Scarlet roundhead [Leratiomyces ceres = Stropharia aurantiaca]– see here for more information about this species.
Fluted birdsnest [Cyathus striatus] – This larger birdsnest is easy recognised by the dark brown hairy cup with a shiny fluted interior.
Sticky-bun bolete [Suillus granulatus] – The sticky-bun bolete was growing under pines further up the slope from the mulched garden. These are some of the oldest radaiata pines [Pinus radiata] in New Zealand having been grown from one of the first seed shipments from California in 1868. [Update 11 May 2014: I was very uncomfortable with this identification and kept coming back to a species of Boletus. When Jerry Cooper saw the picture he emailed me and said he thought it was a Boletus as well. Unfortunately I didn’t keep the specimen so looks like I will be walking to work up this path in the hope of seeing it again.]
22 April 2014
In March I started to record the fungi that I was seeing in the Bolton Street Memorial Park (aka Bolton Street Cemetery) and in particular mushrooms on a stump on the Carr Path. I saw another flush of crumble inkcap [Coprinellus micaceus] on the 22 April 2014 but it had already began to collapse. While on the other side of the stump was a cluster of small wood-ear jelly [Auricularia cornea].
Crumble inkcap [Coprinellus micaceus]
Wood-ear jelly [Auricularia cornea]
Not far from the stump, further along the Carr path, growing on the edge of native bush but within the root zone of radiata pine [Pinus radiata] was a group of Psathyrella candolleana. This small mushroom has a blackish spore print.
23 April 2014
The Bolton Street Memorial Park is cut in half by the Wellington Motorway. The fungi above were seen on the low half of the park or city side of the motorway. The next day I walked around the upper park.
Sociable inkcap [Coprinellus disseminates] – This was growing on the roots and stump of a dead tree Lyon path.
Hebeloma crustuliniforme – This was growing on a grave between the Seddon and the Holland Memorials at the top of the Robertson Way path. Richard Seddon was Prime Minister of New Zealand from 1893 until his death in 1906, and Henry Holland was Leader of the Labour Party from 1919 until his death in 1933.
4 May 2014
Scarlet flycap [Amanita muscaria] – Two mushrooms were growing on a grave next to the one on which I saw the Hebeloma a couple of weeks ago. The scarlet flycap, a mycorrhizal fungus, was within the root zone of root zone of ‘old man’ radiata pine [Pinus radiata]. The Holland Memorial is in the background. Read more about scarlet flycaps here.
A few meters further down the Robertson Way path at the junction with the Observatory path there is a group of kanaka trees [Kunzea ericoides]. Within there root zone was a group of cocoa boletes [Tylopylus brunneus] as this is a mycorrhizal species. If you bruise the pale yellow pores on the underside of the cap the tissue will ‘blue’ (read more about blueing here).
Back in the lower Park the stump I have been watching has again wood-ear jelly [Auricularia cornea] and tree swordbelt [Agrocybe parasitica]. But there is a now a new wood decay species, sulphur woodtuft [Hypholoma fasciculare].
Sulphur woodtuft [Hypholoma fasciculare].