Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Fungi on Tung Nut Tree Stump

While learning more about fungi, I've become an avid watcher of the tung nut tree stump. Every day I trot out to the side of the house and see what's come up, if anything. A few mornings ago, after warm rain in the night, it sported these two on the sheltered side of the stump. Stump in foreground.

While I've got no hope figuring out their name, if they even have any, I can but have a go at narrowing down my ideas as to their kind.

1) They've appeared on the outer layer of bark so probably they are the fruiting bodies of a fungus helping to decompose the bark.

Fungi on Tung Nut Tree Stump
2) Structurally they are very spongy. Difficult to pick up without breaking.

Gills on underside of cap
3) Gills on underside of cap look like badly stranded cotton yarn, almost fluffy. I assume though, that the fact it has gills puts it in the Agarics or 'Gilled' Fungi group. 

4) The Agarics section is further divided according to where the fungus grows. This one grows on wood, obviously.

5) As the morning proceeded, the fungi browned as they rotted and became slimy to look at. I have a pic but blogger refused to let me put it up

6) My reference and guide is the A. M. Young book, A Field Guide to the Fungi of Australia, which to my inexperienced eye seemed the easiest to learn from.

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