Observation 24138: Amanita sect. Lepidella sensu Bas
When: 2009-08-08
No herbarium specimen

Proposed Names

46% (4)
Recognized by sight
60% (2)
Recognized by sight

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Eye3 = Observer’s choice
Eyes3 = Current consensus


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veil photos added
By: Dan Molter (shroomydan)
2009-08-20 20:54:28 PDT (-0700)

I just found these other two photos. Maybe there is a clue in them somewhere.

species clusters
By: Dan Molter (shroomydan)
2009-08-12 17:01:30 PDT (-0700)

The asexual hypothesis would certainly support species clusters. Reduced gene flow between populations due to sterility of sexual spores would promote speciation by reproductive isolation.

I can imagine gradients, but I’m not aware of having run into them in the past 30 years…
By: R. E. Tulloss (ret)
2009-08-11 14:09:04 PDT (-0700)

I’ve heard people talk about “gradients between species.” I don’t think I’ve ever seen it though. I’m inclined to regard it as unlikely. Members of different sections have been separated for so long that I sincerely doubt if they could mate, for example. Usually, when I find something that I can’t recognize, I attribute that fact to my own ignorance.

On the other hand, I think it is quite true that there may be clusters of species that seem very similar to us in our current state of knowledge. One of the larger such clusters (with subclusters in Asia and in the Americas) is the set of taxa of stirps Hemibapha. Among this group, there are very few characters that are persistently useful for separating taxa: spore length, spore Q-value, pigmentation (usually of the pileus, stipe, limbus internus, and/or partial veil), bruising or other pigment changes, and (possibly) the relative portion of the stipe base that is attached to the inside of the volval sac. Despite this relatively restricted set of characters currently used for differentiation, I have not run into a taxon that could neither be determined (as a known taxon) nor be recognized as an undetermined, but distinct, taxon. I can think of one pair of taxa (that could well be varieties of the same species) for which I have seen (untested) evidence of blotchily mixed pigment coloration (A. flavoconia var. flavoconia and A. elongata); however, in this case the spores of specimens with yellow pilei having an off-center orange blotch were definitely those of A. elongata; and I did not hesitate to consider the specimens involved as most likely to be A. elongata.


we may never get a name on these beautiful lepidellas…
By: Debbie Viess (amanitarita)
2009-08-11 07:27:13 PDT (-0700)

but they have certainly created a stir amongst the amanitologists!
I love the look of that fat and fluffy spindle shaped bulb, even if we never know if it had a long rooting “tail” or not…
funny how these amanitas stick in your psyche, eh? and not just the psychoactive ones! ;)

I dunno Rod
By: Dan Molter (shroomydan)
2009-08-10 17:53:06 PDT (-0700)

I dug my fingers under it and did not feel the bulb extending below what is seen in the photos. The bulb does show a little damage though, so who knows…

A while back, a friend and I were discussing the difficulty mycologists have conducting mating studies on mychorrizal mushrooms, due to an innabilty to germinate the spores. He suggested that maybe all or most of the spores are sterile, a fluke of evolution, and that these fungi reproduce solely by cloning themselves. If this hypothesis is correct, then, as functionally a-sexual organisms, each colony would be on its own divergent evolutionary path. The energy wasted on producing mushrooms and sterile spores is enormous, but evolution is frequently not driven by efficiency; consider the peacock’s tail.

Whatever is going on, there seems to be a gradient of forms between the named species, such that one morphological species appears to bleed into another. This makes it very difficult to establish necessary and sufficient conditions for inclusion in a specific category.

If a tiny bit, then NOT Amanita species 9 (“magniradix Tulloss nom. prov.”)
By: R. E. Tulloss (ret)
2009-08-10 10:58:02 PDT (-0700)

I have been looking at these pictures again and again and thinking about them.
Do you think that the appendiculate matter on the edge of the cap was entirely friable? Or was the friable material connected to a “sterile margin” (i.e., an extension of the cap’s surface layer(s) beyond the edges of the gills)? If the material is all floccose, then A. rhopalopus might be a reasonable guess. Otherwise, either you only saw a small cross-section of a deeply-radicating, narrow extension of the bulb OR we MIGHT have A. marginata (which is supposed to have a MUCH more decorated bulb) OR we MIGHT have something entirely different….

Very best,


just a tiny bit
By: Dan Molter (shroomydan)
2009-08-09 17:09:32 PDT (-0700)

left in the ground.

By any chance…
By: R. E. Tulloss (ret)
2009-08-09 16:48:45 PDT (-0700)

By any chance, do you have an idea of how much of the bulb was left in the ground?


even then…
By: Dan Molter (shroomydan)
2009-08-09 08:26:37 PDT (-0700)

That is the discouraging part about collecting mushrooms. Even with microscopy many collections are unidentifiable.

The caps of these lepidellas are about three or four inches in diameter. They were growing from the ground under mixed hardwoods. The smell was typical Lepidella stink, but the fragrance was very mild.

nice example of an appendiculate margin…
By: Debbie Viess (amanitarita)
2009-08-09 08:12:31 PDT (-0700)

but ya gotta collect these lepidellas if you want an ID, and even then…

Nice pics of a nice find Dan.
By: walt sturgeon (Mycowalt)
2009-08-09 08:06:06 PDT (-0700)

Reminds me a bit of Amanita pelioma which usually has blue green stains on the lower stipe.

Created: 2009-08-08 20:21:41 PDT (-0700)
Last modified: 2013-12-15 14:49:10 PST (-0800)
Viewed: 249 times, last viewed: 2016-10-26 08:30:56 PDT (-0700)
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