Field Guide

Mushrooms

Showing 1 - 5 of 5 results
Media
Photo of a blusher, a tan gilled mushroom, showing injured spot turning rust red
Species Types
Scientific Name
Amanita spp. (about 600 species, worldwide)
Description
This large group of mushrooms accounts for 90 percent of mushroom-related deaths, so every mushroom hunter should be familiar with amanitas. They contain one of the deadliest poisons found in nature!
Media
Photograph of a cluster of devil's urn mushrooms, which are brown and gobletlike
Species Types
Scientific Name
Urnula craterium
Description
Devil's urns are goblet-shaped, leathery brown cups. They grow in clusters on small to medium-sized decaying branches of hardwoods, especially oaks. Look for them in spring.
Media
Photo of a fawn mushroom, which is a brownish gray, gilled, capped mushroom
Species Types
Scientific Name
Pluteus atricapillus (formerly P. cervinus)
Description
The fawn mushroom has a brownish gray cap with whitish to pinkish gills and a whitish stalk. It grows singly or scattered, on dead wood or on the ground over buried wood.
Media
a row of little brown, umbrella-shaped mushrooms along a decaying log
Species Types
Scientific Name
Various species of confusingly similar mushrooms
Description
Like the LGBs (“little gray birds”) of the birdwatchers, this is a catchall category. It includes all the small to medium-sized, hard-to-identify brownish mushroom with spores of all colors. There are many hundreds of species that fit this description!
Media
Photo of rooted collybia, tan, thin-stalked gilled mushroom
Species Types
Scientific Name
Xerula furfuracea (Collybia radicata var. furfuracea)
Description
The rooted collybia has a moist, wrinkled, grayish brown flat cap and a long, slender stalk that continues underground. It grows singly or scattered on and around deciduous trees and stumps.
See Also
Media
Photo of several pinesap plants showing multiple flowers per stalk.
Species Types
Scientific Name
Monotropa hypopitys
Description
Pinesap is a plant that puts the "wild" in wildflower! It lacks chlorophyll, so its roots connect to fungi underground and absorb nutrients from the fungi.
Media
Picture of a patch of filamentous green algae floating in a stream.
Species Types
Scientific Name
Cladophora, Pithophora, and Spirogyra spp., and others
Description
Filamentous green algae forms green, cottony masses that are free-floating or attached to rocks, debris, or other plants.
Media
Photo of several Indian pipe plants with flowers, rising out of leaf litter.
Species Types
Scientific Name
Monotropa uniflora
Description
Indian pipe lacks chlorophyll, so it is white, not green. Below ground, its roots join with fungi that connect to tree roots. This plant, then, takes nourishment indirectly from the trees.

About Mushrooms in Missouri

Mushrooms are a lot like plants, but they lack chlorophyll and have to take nutrients from other materials. Mushrooms are neither plants nor animals. They are in a different kingdom — the fungi. Fungi include the familiar mushroom-forming species, plus the yeasts, molds, smuts, and rusts.

Always be cautious when eating edible mushrooms. Be absolutely sure of the ID, and only eat a small amount the first time you try it to avoid a reaction..