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Maybe someone else would like to comment.
Myxomop you prove nothing by your opinion. You do not persuade. By not studying growth rates of fungi, you find those who have “presumptuous”. In reality you dissuade by admitting your own ignorance of observed fungal growth patterns.
You provide other examples, but do not provide examples of those species.
This is unscientific.
we have at least two species of fungi here, possibly a slime mold, whose degree of difference from one another cannot be determined based on these images alone. In image two, there is the largest example at the center (Bjerkandera), the black discoloration just outside of that ring, the white and cream colored growth to the immediate left and bottom left of that ring, and the more refractive, slimy white growth around the edge of the cut stump.
I find it presumptuous to assert how a fungus is behaving when we don’t know what sort of fungus it is (or if it is even a fungus at all). Certain species of Fusicolla, a nectriaceous ascomycete, and Cryptococcus, a basidiomycetous yeast, each colonize the sap flow of standing, wounded trees or recently cut stumps. Assuming that anything seemingly fungal on wood is abiding by a set of behaviors known to occur in wood-rotting basidiomycetes ignores many other possible identities with different ecologies, ecologies which may put a given organism on or near wood but for entirely different reasons than some Ganoderma or Pleurotus standing beside it.
Put briefly, I find your ecology cart to be before your identification horse. My $0.02.
we have two vastly different fungi here. One growing from apparent heartwood (rare in the PNW), probably from an earlier wound on the tree, which has been growing for years and is likely to be parasitic.
The other is growing from the cambium layer, located just beneath the bark layer and growing inward rapidly on the stump.
‘Cultivated’ mimics ‘growing’ in nature. Unless the tree has been chipped and the chips are therefore a combination of heartwood, sapwood, cambium, and bark, this is the way things occur in nature. Chipping is un-natural in nature.
I encourage you to read the citations once at least. It would prevent many of these sorts of ‘discussions’.
Within a year of tree death, the cambium layer of a tree, no matter how tall or thick, is eaten by one or more fungi. These fungi then grow inward more slowly. Some fungi grow rapidly. Morchella can cross a 3.5" Petri dish within a day at 77 degrees F. Hericium erinaceous can begin fruiting from a space-bag of chips within 28 days. Most other fungi grow much slower, such as Lentinula edodes or Ganoderma lucidum.
Heartwood degraders are typically slow-growing and may take centuries to turn their substrate into soil, especially with huge logs of Giant sequoia or Western Red-cedar.
‘Growing,’ as in ‘not cultivated.’
I’m not interested in cultivation, so I won’t pretend to know anything about it.
You have made zero remarks addressing how competition or rate of growth can be inferred from these two images. I will not re-/read four to five several hundred page books to try and divine that for myself when you claim to be in possession of that very information.
Stamets’ Mushroom Cultivator, Mycelium Running, Growing Gourmet and Medicinal Mushrooms, The Biology and Cultivation of Edible Mushrooms by Chang and Hayes, or The Redefined Forest. It is possible we can then have an intelligent discussion about mushroom cultivation. From what you have already said, we cannot have anything resembling a discussion at this time.
In general, fungi grow from the bark layer inward to the heartwood; a process which can take centuries or longer. In any case, the cambium layer is always eaten within the first year of tree death. Always.
For a bit more detail on this:
The Trees (Betula pendula) had been cut approx 9 months ago. The sap is running and the tree is around 50 metres from a tidal estuary – I guess the white discolouration in the moisture on the stump is likely the salts from the sea water.
Unless the experienced commenters think the white fluid contains a fungus of some type?
There is lots of this growth on the many 100’s of Birch trees which were cut. Many of the (cores of) Birch at this site are spalted (And could be why they were cut) – I wouldn’t know how to ID which fungus created the spalting, but there is certainly lots of it.
of competitive fungi"
I see various types and bits of fungal growth here, belonging to any number of species. I don’t know what in these images says any one is in visible conflict with another.
“The fungus you show appears to have started to colonize the interior of the stump, especially where the wood cracked snd splintered.”
I don’t see any correlation here between amount of visible fungal tissue and “cracked” or “splintered” parts of the wood. That sounds like a suggestion of opportunistic growth in damaged areas, as in parasitism, not saprotrophy.
“The other fungus is growing faster,”
How can you determine speed of growth from a still image?
“and is coming in from the bark layer, which is the normal way that saprophytic fungi would grow.”
How is inward colonization “normal” when so many wood rotters emerge from living or dead wood which is still corticate? I am under the impression that the norm is the reverse, namely the colonization of the interior of substrates followed by the production of exterior fruiting bodies, at least when it comes to lignicolous macrofungi.
Side note: saprophyte is an outdated term, since what we’ve historically referred to as saprophytes (sapro-rot phyte-plants) decompose the dead remains of more than just plants (ie: animal tissues, rocks, other fungi, etc.) Saprotroph is preferred.
“So what you have here is two different fungi competing for the same food source (birch tree stump) and starting from different places on the trunk.”
Again, coexistence is not necessarily evidence of competition. The decomposition of dead, organic material is a sequential process, a congo line of organisms with precisely aligned appetites. Not every two or more species of fungi on a single substrate are in competition with one another.
of competitive fungi, Andrew. The fungus you show appears to have started to colonize the interior of the stump, especially where the wood cracked snd splintered. The other fungus is growing faster, and is coming in from the bark layer, which is the normal way that saprophytic fungi would grow. So what you have here is two different fungi competing for the same food source (birch tree stump) and starting from different places on the trunk.
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