Times-Colonist article on Death Cap mushrooms (Amanita phalloides) in and around Oak Bay. Ex SVIMS president Andy MacKinnon interviewed. Andy also did an interview on Death Cap mushrooms for CFAX 1070 radio.
On the walk, SVIMS members had the opportunity to check out lichens in a rare and endangered Garry oak ecosystem. Volunteers, organized by the late Moralea Milne, have been keeping the Devonian Park ecosystems pristine by removing invasives.
Juliet talked during the walk about lichen characteristics and habitat. Participants were inspired by Juliet’s obvious enthusiasm.
On Saturday, May 6, a group of mushroom enthusiasts from Salt Spring (their Facebook page) held a foray and invited several SVIMS people to join them.
A group of seven SVIMS people tried to board the morning Schwatz Bay ferry to Salt Spring–only to find out that the morning ferries had been cancelled. However, they heard that the ferries were running a free pilot boat service to Salt Spring from the neighbouring Government Wharf. Making their way to the small dock, the small group were all able to fit into the 9:00 am run of the pilot boat and arrive in time for the foray.
Top photo by Mel Hesz, bottom photo by David Walde.
The group of SVIMS people and Salt Springers surveyed a second-growth forest on Cranberry Road. Thanks in part to the recent rains, there were lots of mushrooms to see. About 40 species were logged on iNaturalist. Some of the more interesting finds are described below. (Click on the pictures to see the iNaturalist entries.)
Lachnum virgineum, the hairy fairy cup. Thanks to Ian Gibson for this great stacked closeup photo.
Presumably the mushroom is called “virgineum,” virgin, because it is white, and virgins wore white at weddings. Except the theory doesn’t hold water. The mushroom was first named “virgeneum” in the late 1700s, and brides didn’t start wearing white until Queen Victoria popularized the tradition in the 1830s.
Cudonia circinans has the funny common name “redleg jellybelly.” Reviewing their records, SVIMS members established in 2022 that this was a spring as well as a fall mushroom. It’s truly a club–nothing under the head but bald tissue. This asco club, by the way, has crazy-long ascospores. See the Kuo writeup on this species for a picture of the ascospores.
Juliet Pendray is well known to most of you. Besides being an active member of SVIMS, she was an active member of Vancouver Mycological Society before moving here with James Holkko.
She is going to share lichens with all of us.
This is a zoom-only meeting – members should have received a link from our SVIMS President on April 24. 6:45 pm to socialize. 7 pm to start.
SVIMS members spent the morning of April 29, 2023, at the grounds of Government House. The 18 hectares of the provincial property include extensive natural woodlands (mossy balds, Garry oak meadows) on the south side.
Forayers were mostly on the lookout for fungi, but it was also the week of the iNaturalist 2023 City Nature Challenge Canada, so foray participants were snapping pictures of lots of other groups of organisms. To see the range of species groups, have a look at SVIMS member Elora Adamson’s iNaturalist observations for the morning.
The foray group was composed of both Government House personnel/volunteers and SVIMS members. SVIMS offers a big THANK YOU to Susan, Janet, Elsbeth, Valerie, Dave, Bryce, Rosemary and all the others who made the event possible. At the end of the foray participants were welcomed at the Government House cottage for refreshments and sharing of finds.
The fungal species for the day can be viewed on iNaturalist. In all, forayers found about 15 different species of fungi (as always, the iNaturalist count may change as other people weigh in on the observations). Not too many large mushrooms were identified–several days of sun had dried out what little had managed to come up. Still, one group managed to find the beautiful Bolbitus titubans (Sunny Side Up). One log on the property contained abundant corpses of last year’s Laetiporus gilbertsonii, the Hardwood Chicken of the Woods. (Several members made note of the place–perhaps planning to come back in August to see what the 2023 season might produce?) One dry morel turned up in the collection. Foray leaders identified some rusts often overlooked at other SVIMS events.
Photos courtesy of Steven Strybosch. Richard Winder also has some great photos on Facebook.
Dr. Joey Tanney is a research scientist at Pacific Forestry Centre and a director on our board.
He will talk with us about
Our changing climate and our changing fungi: Swiss needle cast and sooty bark disease on Vancouver Island.