Observation 135590: Amanita Pers.

When: 2013-06-02

Collection location: Aiea, Honolulu, Hawaii, USA [Click for map]

21.4003° -157.8147° 364m

Who: Allen Hoof (allenhoof)

No specimen available

Two golf ball-sized, off-white mushrooms with hemispheric (between convex and ovate) caps and short, inflated, ginger jar-shaped stipes growing in vegetative litter along the north side of Aiea Loop Trail, just southwest of the junction with Kalauao Valley Trail.

Habitat: Mixed native and alien mid-elevation tropical montane forest.

Proposed Names

26% (1)
Recognized by sight

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Eye3 = Observer’s choice
Eyes3 = Current consensus


Add Comment
I don’t think the bottom of the stem is likely to be too helpful.
By: R. E. Tulloss (ret)
2013-06-10 06:20:40 PDT (-0700)

I thank you very much for your effort in going back to check on the amanitas. An animal may have carried them off for food or “recreactional use.” (I have seen squirrels working very hard at collecting mouthfuls of the eastern N. American muscaria-like species, carrying the mouthfuls off to a cache and coming back for more.) So Mother Nature can be unaccommodating to mycologists. Don’t worry about it. Maybe you’ll see some more of this taxon.

Thanks again.

Very best,


Disappointing discovery
By: Allen Hoof (allenhoof)
2013-06-09 13:10:10 PDT (-0700)

Dr Tulloss

A return yesterday to the site of this observation revealed that the mushrooms were gone—I suspect deliberately removed or destroyed by hikers.

I took a pic of the remnants of the stalks, and then dug them up. There was so little recovered of the small one that—in my unlettered opinion—it will probably be of little use. However, there may be some research value in the big remnant, pictured alongside a mm scale, all of which was below ground level. It is now stored in a “zip lock” bag at ambient temperature (~ 75° F); no dessication process has yet been started.

If, based on the fifth (and currently last) picture, you believe some use may be made of what was recovered, please advise.



By: R. E. Tulloss (ret)
2013-06-06 13:20:55 PDT (-0700)

interest can sometimes be as good or better than credentials. Credentials can lie in a drawer.


Enter the layman
By: Allen Hoof (allenhoof)
2013-06-06 13:10:24 PDT (-0700)

Dr. Tulloss:

I have no credentials whatever in mycology, so I cannot contribute intelligently or helpfully to this discussion. I can only thank you for educating me via those links.

I can, however, follow instructions. I can also take fairly good hi-res pics and I wield a mean pocket knife.

I will consult the local park rules, and if none will be broken thereby, I will do a follow-up which will hopefully include harvesting a specimen.


Hello, Allen. EDIT
By: R. E. Tulloss (ret)
2013-06-06 12:40:29 PDT (-0700)

I am fairly confident that this is not A. marmorata which has a smooth, marbled (brown and white) cap and a membranous volva around the stem base and arising from a subglobose bulb:


One of the taxa described from Hawaii is one of the “free living” species that are not mycorrhizal. Your mushroom is not this species either:


Of the species that have been reported, the most likely would be the yellow-cap variant of either A. muscaria or of the North American species that is similar to muscaria and may (or may not) need a name. The white volval “warts” on the cap and the yellowish tint of the barely exposed cap surface would be consistent with something like this:


(which is the yellow capped variant of the North American “muscaria”).

The bulb of your mushroom is the problem in the latter case. The bulbs of muscarioid taxa are roughly globose. Your specimen seems to have a rounded top that is wider than the bulb below it. That is the bulb seems to narrow downward. If you have a different perception, please let me know. I think I may see reddish brown (or brownish red) staining on this bulb. This would be a “no go” for the idea that the material is muscarioid.

So, we need more info. If you find that one of the specimens has expanded so that the cap is rather open, then it would be good to not only take pictures of the standing mushrooms; but, if permitted, carefully extract the mushroom from the ground (digging UNDER the stem’s bulb) and, with a sharp knife slice the mushroom in half top-to-bottom. Then a photograph of a half of the mushroom (cut flesh side up) will be very interesting. It will show the bulb “in silhouette” and it will show if there is pigment in and/or under the skin of the cap.

At this point, you might as well cut the halves in half again to speed drying and put them in a vegetable dryer if you happen to have access to one. When the material is completely dry you could send it to me…. And the team here in Roosevelt, NJ, can put the critter through the taxonomic ringer.


But don’t do any illegal stuff that I may have suggested above due to my ignorance of the local park rules!

Very best,


By: Christian (Christian Schwarz)
2013-06-06 12:13:27 PDT (-0700)

the veil on the cap and overall shape and color are pretty far off for that species, but I agree that they aren’t A. muscaria either.

Addtional input
By: Allen Hoof (allenhoof)
2013-06-06 11:23:57 PDT (-0700)

First off, thank you Dr. Tulloss.

In Mushrooms of Hawaii, Hemmes and Desjardin (pp 175-6, other pp as well) describe two species of Amanita in Hawaii, both poisonous.

One, A. muscaria does not appear to be a match for this observation: wrong size, wrong color, wrong range.

The other, A. marmorata (which the reference suggests was introduced, perhaps from Australia) could be. However, the individuals pictured in Hemmes do not have areolae on the caps; those in this observation do, prominently.

The “ginger-jar” shape I noted could actually be a volva at the base of the stem, similar to that described in Hemmes for A. Marmorata.

I shall attempt to relocate these specimens within the next couple of days to obtain additional pictures and measurements.


Very interesting, Allen.
By: R. E. Tulloss (ret)
2013-06-06 06:48:51 PDT (-0700)

MO tells me that there’s no dried specimen. Is it possible to go back to the site and photograph the mushrooms after they have opened some more? Is it an area in which collecting is permitted? My guess is that this will be an introduced species (since all the amanitas reported from Hawaii, so far as I know, have been introduced with soil or plants.

Very best,

Rod Tulloss

Created: 2013-06-05 20:46:47 PDT (-0700)
Last modified: 2013-06-06 05:50:47 PDT (-0700)
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