Fungi Fanatic

I only set out to find the varieties mentioned in Donald Stokes’ A Guide to Nature in Winter.  I found most of those.  And now I keep finding more!  Yesterday, I spent most of the daylight hours in Chautauqua Gorge.  While my eye was drawn by many things, most of my photos were of fungi… again…

Witch's ButterThis one is called “Witch’s Butter.”  It is a jelly fungus, which is strange because even though it looks gelatinous, it is hard to the touch.  I was really excited when I found some at Audubon a few days ago because I had never seen it before.  (Or at least, never noticed it before…)  At the gorge, it was everywhere!

FungusIn a couple of places I found colonies like this.  They look like mini puffballs.  I have no idea what they actually are.

Fungus Closeup

One of my favorite finds was a Tinder Polypore pair.  I had reported in a previous post that because the bracket fungi orient themselves according to gravity, you can sometimes find individuals that are positioned at right angles to one another.  One appeared when the tree was upright, the other after the tree fell.  Well, I found one!  And here it is:

Fomes Fomentarius

I’m just so fascinated at the wide variety of fungi you can find… IN WINTER!  Why did I never notice it before? 

Tomorrow, I’ll post some of the amazing ice pictures I took.  (And I only got a little damp taking them… )

P.S.  Have a safe and fun New Year’s Eve Celebration!

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9 thoughts on “Fungi Fanatic

  1. Great photos, as always. I was fascinated with the name “Witch’s Butter” so I did a google search for the reason behind the name (with a name like that, there just has to be folklore, of some sort, involved). According to a few sources, if this fungus was found outside your home, you had been targeted by a witch, and the only way to break the hex was to poke holes in the fungus! Here’s hoping Audubon has not been cursed for the new year — have a safe holiday!

  2. I just came across your website from the Nature Remains blog – I love your photos – I am adding your blog to my blogroll, hope that’s okay! I am going to explore your site now…

    Cheers,

    Mungo

  3. Your little puffballs might be Lycoperdon. My new favorite latin name! “Wolf fart” puffballs… really!

    Fungi are difficult though. So many look so much alike.

  4. Pingback: Lycoperdon pyriforme « A Passion for Nature

  5. I have been noticing a lot of fungi in my wood lately. Probably because all the snow has melted. I cannot identify it though. I think I’ll snap some pictures and look it up.

  6. I love your photographs. I am obsessed with fungi and love anything to do with it. I think they are amazing. your piece is very informative- thanks for the info!

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