Ink Caps, Hare’s Feet: Toadstools on campus

coprinus

Hare’s Foot Ink Cap (Coprinopsis lagopus)

A combination of mild damp autumnal weather and an abundance of wood chippings on campus seems to be paying dividends for the fungal flora of Whiteknights.

Here we see the Hare’s Foot Ink Cap (Coprinopsis lagopus) flourishing on wood chippings near Whiteknights Lake.  This species gets its name from the young caps which are furry – rather like a Hare’s Foot in fact!  This genus is known as the “Ink Caps” because of their characteristic autodigestion i.e. the toadstool caps literally dissolving thereby releasing and dispersing their spores to create lots more little toadstools (Hare’s feet in this case!).

This is just one example of the fungal diversity on campus, keep your eyes open!

Acknowledgements and References:

Thanks to Dr Graham Holloway for the identification.

There are useful fungal references in Alastair Culham’s post on Russula, but in addition why not try this key (translated from the original Estonian) by Michael Kuo when you next make a fungal find?

About drmgoeswild

Field botanist and ecologist, with a passion for plants and vegetation and teaching and learning (follow me at www.drmgoeswild.com)
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