Monday, 15 October 2012

Identification Answers

Fungi and Other Goodies
OK!  Quiz answers!  The fungi in this group are numbers 1, 2 and 6.  1 is a Small Stag's-horn Fungus, Calocera cornea; rather immature.  2 has the delightful common name of Crystal Brain, and can also be called Exidia nucleata.  6 is a Pale Staghorn,  Calocera pallidospathulata.

Number 3 had me excited when I saw it in wet rotting wood.  But on closer examination it turned out to be two holly berries that had fallen from the bush above.

I found Number 4 by turning over a piece of fallen wood.  It is a cluster of slug's eggs.  I don't know what species.  They will be familiar to most gardeners.

Number 5 is probably a bit of a trick question.  It's a Myxomycete, or Slime Mould, most likely a species of Trichia; it would take an expert with a microscope to determine which species.  Although Slime Moulds are often lumped in with fungi, because they have a lot of superficial similarities and they grow in the same places, many biologists think that they actually belong to a different kingdom and are related to Amoebas.  Some of them are quite mobile for part of their life cycles.  But they also reproduce by disseminating airborne spores, like fungi.  They are truly odd.

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