May 23, 2012

Picture of the Day: The Mushroom Kingdom




mushroom kingdom lots of mushroom fungi growing on a tree Picture of the Day: The Mushroom Kingdom


In this fascinating closeup, we see hundreds of ‘little brown mushrooms‘ covering a tree. Some see little umbrellas, some only see the dying/decaying one in the middle; and many, apparently, are simply repulsed by such a large amount of fungi in one place. I’m undecided, yet inexplicably drawn to this photo. What do you think of this little mushroom kingdom?

“Little brown mushroom” (or LBM) refers to any of a large number of small, dull-coloured agaric species, with few macromorphological uniquely distinguishing characteristics. As a result, LBMs typically range from difficult to impossible for mushroom hunters to identify. Experienced mushroomers may discern more subtle identifying traits that help narrow the mushroom down to a particular genus or group of species, but exact identification of LBMs often requires close examination of microscopic characteristics plus a certain degree of familiarity or specialization in that particular group.

For mycologists, LBMs are the equivalent of LBJs (“little brown job”) and DYCs (“damned yellow composite”) that are the bane of ornithologists and botanists, respectively. [Source: Wikipedia]