Name: Saproamanita Redhead, Vizzini, Drehmel & Contu
Most Confident Observations:
Copyright © 2018 Debbie Viess (micro)
Version: 18
Previous Version 


Rank: Genus

Status: Accepted

Name: Saproamanita

Author: Redhead, Vizzini, Drehmel & Contu

Citation: IMA Fungus 7(1): 121 (2016)

Synonym(s):Amanita sect. Lepidella sensu Bas

Deprecated Synonyms: Lepidella E.-J. Gilbert, Aspidella E.-J. Gilbert, Gilbertia nom. inval., Saproamanita group, Amanita sect. Lepidella Corner & Bas

Notes on Taxonomy: [Edit]

Etymology: ancient Gr. σαπρός (saprós) – decay and Amanita (f.).
Replaced name: Lepidella E.-J. Gilbert, Bull. Soc. Mycol. Fr. 41: 303 (1925); nom. illegit. (Art. 53.1), non Lepidella Tiegh.
1911 (Loranthaceae).
Type species: Saproamanita vittadinii (Moretti ) Redhead et al. 2016 (syn. Agaricus vittadinii Moretti 1826, Amanita vittadinii (Moretti) Vittad. 1826, Armillaria vittadinii (Moretti) Locq. 1952, Aspidella vittadinii (Moretti) E.-J. Gilbert 1940, Lepidella vittadinii (Moretti) E.-J. Gilbert 1925, Lepiota vittadinii (Moretti) Quél. 1873).
Aspidella E.-J. Gilbert in Bresadola, Icon. mycol. 27 (suppl. 1, fasc. 1): 63 (1940); nom. illeg. (Art. 53.1), non Aspidella E. Billings 1872 (fossil. Classified in various extant kingdoms as an alga, animal, bacterium, fungus or in an extinct Kingdom, Vendobionta).
Gilbertia Donk, in litt. “1934”; nom. inval. (Arts. 29, 36.1) , cited by Gilbert (1940) as unpublished. See also Donk (1962) and Neville & Poumarat (2004).
Amanita subgen. Lepidella Beauseigneur, Contrib. étude Fl. Mycol.: 38 (1926); as “Gilbert”.
Amanita subgen. Aspidella_ E.-J. Gilbert, Comment. Amanites, Notul. Amanites [suppl.] XXX: 3 (1941) nom. and stat. nov. based on an illegitimate basionym (Art. 58.1)
Amanita sect. Aspidella Pomerleau, Nat. can. 93: 844 (1966); replacement name at a different rank, based on an illegitimate basionym (Arts. 36.2, 38.1, 41.5, 58.1).
Amanita sect. Lepidella Corner & Bas Persoonia 2: 244 (1962); without attribution; replacement name at a different rank based on an illegitimate basionym (Arts 36.2, 38.1, 41.5, 58.1).
Amanita subsect. Vittadiniae Bas, Persoonia 5: 346 (1969). Amanita ser. Vittadiniae (Bas) Neville & Poumarat, Fungi Europaei 9: 510 (2004).

Redhead, Vizzini, Drehmel & Contu, Saproamanita, a new name for both Lepidella E.-J. Gilbert and Aspidella E.-J. Gilbert (Amaniteae, Amanitaceae), IMA Fungus 7(1): 119–129 (2016) doi:10.5598/imafungus.2016.07.01.07

Brief Description: [See More | Edit]

The saprotrophic clade of mushrooms formerly included in Amanita, Aspidella, and/or Lepidella.1

Descriptions: [Create]


Add Comment
By: S. Redhead (Scott)
2019-03-22 10:23:25 PDT (-0700)

Dear MO readers: Let me begin this response to issues raised by Danny by clarifying the issue of respect. First of all, thank you for appreciating that there was value in addressing the topic scientifically, viz. your statement, ““… is the ideal to which this site has always strived that MO be a venue for discussions of such a caliber.”

There should be no doubt that I greatly respect Rod Tulloss and his expertise and accomplishments and dedication. He and I have had some interesting discussions through the years. There we are together, he standing, me almost kneeling, at the North American Mycoflora meeting

Also I greatly respect Else Vellinga, as she well knows. On the same site there is my photo of Else and Christian Schwarz. It was a great meeting.

But we should endeavour to restrict the discussions to data, observations, and the science, rules governing names, and natural history when weighing options. I am not at all certain Roy Halling, who is another good friend of mine, and very respected colleague, would appreciate whatever opinion, strong or otherwise, that he may or may not have expressed, being published and attributing him with maligning another scientist without his consent. Additionally, personally attacking the reputation of a well established Italian researcher, Alfredo Vizzini, publically, is not really meeting that ‘caliber’ that reflects the ‘ideal’ that you wish for in MO. Alfredo Vizzini and I have disagreed on several issues as he knows, but I see value and increasing significance to his contributions following in the footsteps of giants in mycology from Italy. There was Carlo Vittadini himself, after which Saproamanita vittadinii is named, Giacomo Bresadola, Beniamino Peyronnel, Pier Andrea Saccardo, to name a few. I see that Vizzini has at least 154 articles cited by 1365 articles and he has 150 co-authors. Among the co-authors, were Pierre Arthur Moreau, P. Brandon Matheny, G. Moreno, Vladimir Antonin, Karen Nakasone, Bart Buyck, Beatriz Ortiz-Santana, etc. including of course me and let’s not forget Amanita pioneer Dennis Drehmel, co-author of Saproamanita. Vizzini has published in Nova Hedwigia, Mycokeys, Nordic Journal of Botany, Fungal ecology, Frontiers in Ecology and Evolution, Cryptogamie- Mycologie, Persoonia, Mycologia, Plos Biology, Italian Botanist, IMA Fungus, Phytotaxa, Index Fungorum, Sydowia, Mycotaxon, Turkish Journal of Botany, Mycoscience, and so on.

Regarding the articles published post 2016 that you cite in defense of maintaining Amanita as it is and Amanita subg. Lepidella sensu Bas, readers should be aware that if you actually look at the publication by the upcoming new scientist, Dr. Camille Truong, that their figure 1, shows a large clade (group) labelled “subgenus Lepidella” that includes among other things Amanita flavoconia and A. phalloides. What it does not include is the type of Amanita subg. Lepidella, which is A. vittadinii, or any of the other species of non-mycorrhizal taxa. This is simply wrong and the journal editors should not have allowed it if they had been aware of the forced illegitimate classification. My understanding on how this came about was that the authors were forced by an anonymous reviewer to impose the indefensible classification on them before publishing, contrary to rules applicable to names, or not be able to publish in a reasonable time. I really felt quite badly for Camille and any other young mycologist because this was unfair of the reviewer(s). Their clade with A. phalloides at least should have been called Amanita subg. Amanitina not Amanita subg. Lepidella. Here we see why I praise Cui et al. (2018) for being scientific and facing up to where type-anchored names should be used. They adopt Amanita subg. Amanitina for the same clade. They at least restrict Amanita subg. Lepidella to a smaller clade that does contain the type, A. vittadinii. The fact that they do not adopt Saproamanita is entirely reasonable and rational, but even they are not outside of the influence of anonymous forces. Co-author Zhu-Liang Yang is after all an editor for which I recognize as one of the best sources of information on Amanitaceae. However, for some reason it has not kept up-to-date on any classification of the family outside of species and subspecific taxa in the family. Only 3 genera are recognized: Amanita, Catatrama and Limacella. Dr. Yang recognizes 5 genera: Amanita, Catatrama, Limacella, Limacellopsis, and Zhuliangomyces. Dr. Yang recognizes 3 subgenera, including Amanita subg. Amanitina. Currently the latter is not treated and Limacellopsis and Zhuliangomyces (= Myxoderma) are not on the site either. That would require rethinking of the generic and subgeneric levels of classification within the site itself, which is change, and sometimes change is difficult. In science as in politics, one sometimes makes diplomatic compromises, but eventually the facts do speak for themselves, so to say. Once Amanita subg. Amanitina is recognized, there remains a relatively small group of species that require classification in some genus/genera or subgenus/subgenera. That is why it is difficult to face the truth. One cannot maintain Amanita subg. Lepidella sensu Bas or Amanita sect. Lepidella sensu Bas. Sorry Rod, that is where the evidence leads. This is not a reflection of any disrespect to the famous late Cornelius (Kees) Bas, one of the mycological giants and a renowned Dutch scientist, who was an influential pioneer not only for Amanita taxonomy but also a favorite genus of mine, Squamanita !

All that was to say that personalities should not be guiding us, and if you are going to quote technical literature, you should at least look at the data and analyses and focus on that.

I see that Debbie has run a BLAST in genBank.

This is a wonderful and powerful resource operated by the US government. Most MO participants can ignore the technicalities, except to be aware that it is an important tool for scientists.

amused to see this tired old quote used thrice by Danny here
By: Debbie Viess (amanitarita)
2019-03-22 08:34:00 PDT (-0700)

“Tulloss et al. (2016) argued against the separation of Saproamanita from Amanita because the amycorrhizal species do not form a well-supported clade and are arguably the “mother” of the genus Amanita rather than a sister group within it. In this study, we follow the interpretation of Tulloss et al. (2016).”

The last citing of the three was particularly telling, since the authors’ paper names an Indian amanita after Tulloss! Gosh, d’you think that they would support his viewpoint on this matter, being ardent admirers and all?

Saproamanitas and lepidellas in general may be the multiple “Mommas of Amanita” (we are all aware that the former lepidellas are the most primitive of the amanitas), but it turns out, with the publication of the supporting data that was there all along, cited by Cui and used by Redhead and Vizzini in their original paper, it does indeed form a well-supported clade.

We cannot ignore “new” data for our convenience or biases. If you run a BLAST, both ITS and LSU, on Peter Werner’s saprobic amanita from the Carrizo Plains, you too will see how nicely the Saproamanitas cluster. You can also view how DNA sometimes doesn’t tell the entire truth … with Peter’s Saproamanita (MO 313702) supposedly ITS DNA matching prairiicola, but in fact, being quite different in the macro (and maybe the micro, too).

The reason we don’t see Desjardin and Wolfe and Pringle commenting here is because they really aren’t very concerned about these MO tempests in a teapot.
And like I said, just because their names were on Tulloss’ paper, we have NO IDEA just what their support or contributions looked like in reality.

Here’s a thought … let’s just let this sort itself out with time and further analysis, and leave those emotional appeals behind.

Truth will out.

By: Danny Newman (myxomop)
2019-03-21 16:42:45 PDT (-0700)

if it’s going to be locked in one position or another, I would vote for Saproamanita to be deprecated. Three Amanitaceae publications produced since the time of the erection of this genus (and its subsequent refutation) have chosen to consider the relevant taxa as residing in Amanita sect. Lepidella until or unless more comprehensive studies are undertaken:

Although the monophyly of ECM Amanita species is unequivocal, the generic concept of Saproamanita have been contested based on the lack of morphological characters and the fact that this genus may be a paraphyletic grade of species rather than a true monophyletic group (Tulloss et al. 2016). The generic delimitation of Amanita is beyond the scope of this paper and we therefore retained all species within the genus Amanita until further work clarifies the nomenclature of this group.

-Cui, Y.-Y., Cai, Q., Tang, L.-P., Liu, J.-W., & Yang, Z. L. (2018). The family Amanitaceae: molecular phylogeny, higher-rank taxonomy and the species in China. Fungal Diversity, 91(1), 5–230. doi:10.1007/s13225-018-0405-9

Although the monophyly of ECM Amanita species is unequivocal, the generic concept of Saproamanita have been contested based on the lack of morphological characters and the fact that this genus may be a paraphyletic grade of species rather than a true monophyletic group (Tulloss et al. 2016). The generic delimitation of Amanita is beyond the scope of this paper and we therefore retained all species within the genus Amanita until further work clarifies the nomenclature of this group.

-Truong, C., Sánchez-Ramírez, S., Kuhar, F., Kaplan, Z., & Smith, M. E. (2017). The Gondwanan connection – Southern temperate Amanita lineages and the description of the first sequestrate species from the Americas. Fungal Biology, 121(8), 638–651. doi:10.1016/j.funbio.2017.04.006

The Amanitaceae is one of the most dominant and species-rich families of Basidiomycota. Traditionally, this family is divided into three genera, namely Amanita Pers., Limacella Earle and Catatrama Franco-Mol. However, a recent study by Redhead et al. (2016) divided Amanita into two genera, Amanita and Saproamanita Redhead, Vizzini, Drehmel & Contu, the former genus including species which are mycorrhizal in nature and the latter genus including only amycorrhizal/free-living species within Amanita. Subsequent to their establishment of the new genus, Tulloss et al. (2016) argued against the separation of Saproamanita from Amanita because the amycorrhizal species do not form a well-supported clade and are arguably the “mother” of the genus Amanita rather than a sister group within it. In this study, we follow the interpretation of Tulloss et al. (2016).

-Hosen MI, Mehmood T, Das K, Kudzma LV, Bhatt RP (2018) Amanita tullossiana, a new species, and two new records of Amanita section Lepidella from north-western Himalaya, India. MycoKeys 37: 73-92.

Presumably all of the authors of Tulloss et al. 2016 are of the same opinion as they were 3-4 years ago, though relatively few have weighed in on the issue on MO, and none on this thread in particular. Unless I am missing something, there is already a professional consensus, and it is to ere on the side of conservatism and caution.

I am not sure why Danny finds this conversation “imbalanced.”
By: Debbie Viess (amanitarita)
2019-03-21 15:30:02 PDT (-0700)

I am quite sure that Tulloss is perfectly aware of this conversation and could pop in at any time. How could he not be, since he gets the very same alerts that I do, and his name is also right here on the Saproamanita page?

As to the rest of the signees to the Tulloss paper … I am not even sure which had all that much investment in its outcome and conclusions and even the writing of that paper, to be honest, or if they wholly supported all of the ideas therein.
I know for a fact that one signee did not, and was surprised to see his name added there. Else, the second signatory, reasonably supports her original 6 simple guidelines for introducing new genera, all of which, now that we have firmly established that Saproamanita is polyphyletic, have now been met. They actually had been met at the outset, but some of Wolfe’s DNA data was unpublished at the time, although it had been shared with Redhead prior to the publication of Saproamanita, as he stated in his paper.

I agree that Rod Tulloss has dedicated much time and effort and affection towards his beloved amanitas. But no one owns a genus, and anyone can propose a name, if the data warrants, and the proper publications are made.
I believe that Saproamanita is a valid name. The court of public opinon, personal biases and popularity contests are not the point here.

Amanitas have no feelings that can be hurt, a paraphrase of something that Adolf has been saying all along. Unfortunately, that is not true for we humans. But perhaps emotions really do not and should not have a place in this argument?

I think that Saproamanita is a great name for an interesting subset of Amanita. The non-mycorrhizal amanitas are unique, and the genus name clearly states how. In no way would using that name for amanitas that are clearly different from the rest muddy our waters of understanding for the rest of the genus.

Use it or don’t use it. Just like for every other latin name out there, there will always be debate and push-back, those who agree and those who don’t.

Name Locked to avoid further deprecation wars
By: Joseph D. Cohen (Joe Cohen)
2019-03-21 12:42:20 PDT (-0700)

I personally am inclined to be lumper, rather than a splitter. But this Name is now on v.16. There’s obviously a lot of heated controversy about this Name.
Please let’s leave it alone until there’s a wider professional consensus.

This conversation is —
By: Danny Newman (myxomop)
2019-03-21 11:55:53 PDT (-0700)

taxonomically, nomenclaturally, phylogenetically — well out of my league and over my head. The same can be said for 99% of users on MO. That does nothing to detract from its importance. On the contrary, it is the ideal to which this site has always strived that MO be a venue for discussions of such a caliber.

That being said, there are several conspicuous absences in the room. Tulloss et al. 2016 has been cited or referenced in comments below, but not one of those authors have personally taken part in this thread. Until or unless they do, I find the conversation to be imbalanced, and any perceived consensus to be contrived.

Having little to contribute on the hard science of the matter, I wish to offer what, to some, will be a unwelcome or irrelevant comment on some of the broader, political components of the argument, as seem from my perspective and that of some fellow researchers.

It cannot be ignored that Vizzini has developed a reputation for the rapid and non-peer-reviewed erection of genera and bulk nomenclatural recombinations via Synopsis Fungorum (colloquially known as turbo taxonomy), frequently deemed spurious by specialists on account of basing sweeping decisions on few collections and insufficient supporting documentation. The combinations and publications to which his name is appended frequently refer to fungi in which he does not specialize himself, and seldom if ever do the alphataxonomists of those groups appear as collaborators, whether as co-authors or in the acknowledgements. Some have come to characterize that behavior as capricious, self-serving, and professionally disingenuous, and I can see why they feel that way. Dr. Roy Halling, a co-author on the refutation to Saproamanita and on the “Six simple guidelines for introducing new genera of
fungi”, has had to contend with what he publicly describes as “The Bolete Nomenclatural Holocaust,” carried out almost entirely by Vizzini and his collaborators.

On the contrary, Dr. Tulloss is widely considered to be the single greatest authority on Amanitaceae. The family has been his sole research focus for several decades, having directly descended from the last century’s preeminent amanitologist, Dr. Cornelius Bas. His website is the single most comprehensive resource on the family ever created, his Herbarium Amanitarum Rooseveltensis, which contained upwards of 9000 specimens as of 2017, may be the most important collection of Amanitaceae on Earth. Having attended an Amanitaceae course taught by Dr. Tulloss in 2014, I can personally attest to his intense knowledge of and dedication to these fungi, to which he has devoted over 40 years of study and many tens of thousands of dollars in personal finances since his retirement from his career as an engineer. His presence on MO has been a cherished and valuable one, and epitomizes the parataxonomic model to which MO is so well suited when professionals and the public work together.

If I could argue the 5th dimensional amanitological fine points of this matter, I would. I cannot. Perhaps that automatically disqualifies my opinion, which is admittedly much more politics than science. But in a field where the decisions of what to call and how to sort things are only ever a matter of preference and consensus among researchers, reputations and credibility count for something.

My $0.02.

By: S. Redhead (Scott)
2019-03-21 10:33:45 PDT (-0700)

see comments just posted

The changing status of Saproamanita
By: S. Redhead (Scott)
2019-03-21 10:32:51 PDT (-0700)

I am changing this name back to ‘preferred’ and would appreciate it if it were not changed back to ‘deprecated’. Out of courtesy to others on MO I gave up modifying the individual species names, for now.

Since last commenting I have waited for reality to sink in for those defending the indefensible use of Amanita subg. Lepidella for taxa like Amanita flavorubens, A. rubescens, A. flavoconia, A. citrina, A. brunnescens, A. silvicola, A. strobiliformis, A. virosa, A. phalloides, A. verna, A. smithiana, A. atkinsoniana, A. chlorinosma, A. cokeri, and many others. Similarly, reality should sink in to those fighting to include in Amanita sect. Lepidella (or if you prefer, Amanita subg. Lepidella sect. Lepidella) species such as Amanita smithiana, A. chlorinosma, A. cokeri, A. atkinsoniana, and A. peckiana etc. when none of these species comes anywhere close phylogenetically to the type species for the names, which is Agaricus vittadinii (aka Amanita vittadinii, Saproamanita vittadinii). To avoid facing this reality, the often now cited Tulloss et al. (2016) publication authors chose to create a fictitious name, the Greek letter phi. I must credit Cui et al. (2018) with facing reality, and dropping this pretense, and I give credit to Dr. Zhu-Liang YANG, who at the time was a co-author of the Tulloss et al (2016) publication, for being scientific and adopting a classification that reflected type-anchored names because he too was a co-author of the Cui et al. (2018) publication now being cited here in MO. Dr. Yang was the senior author of the publication splitting up Limacella (Yang et al. 2018. Phylogeny, diversity and morphological evolution of Amanitaceae. Biosyst. Ecol. Ser. 34: 359–380) that was mentioned by Tulloss et al. (2016) in a footnote on page 1 wherein the senior author, Rod, expressed surprise that this was happening. In the Yang et al. (2018) analysis (3 genes) statistical support for Amanita (including Saproamanita) being separated from any of the former Limacella was said to be 87/0.93 MPB/BPP. Nobody felt the urge to argue Limacella should be combined with Amanita because the support was a bit weaker than expected? Why not? Perhaps because it did not make sense and nothing was gained! Perhaps because that would mess up a favored genus? Amanita would then include Limacella.

Jump to the Cui et al. (2018) publication, where in a 4 gene analysis there is support of 100 ML for a genus Amanita (consisting of 2 combined subgenera: subg. Amanita and subg. Amanitina) and a drop to 97 ML when Saproamanita (aka Amanita subg. Lepidella) is included. It rises again to 100 ML if Limacella and Catatrama and Limacellopsis and Myxoderma [now = Zhuliangomyces] are included. Again, nobody is rushing to include Limacella, Catatrama, Limacellopsis and Zhuliangomyces in Amanita. That would mess up an established ideal. Saproamanita (aka Amanita subg. Lepidella) was supported by 77 ML. While statistically weaker, it does not prove the generic concept of Saproamanita is right or wrong, but the evidence against the Saproamanita is far weaker. Looking back at Wolfe et al. (2012) they reported MLB/BPP support for the Saproamanita clade at 66%/0.93. Looked at another way, there was only 34% against the concept. Either way, nothing is proven 100%. It was less than clear how they did their analyses however.

There are benefits to recognizing a separate genus, and this is why the idea should be adopted. Look at This was the basis of the GenBank sequence MH636304 deposited by Alan Rockefeller and collected by Peter G. Werner.


Run a BLAST and see what you get. Then do a Quick Distance tree. All you see are Saproamanita, no true Amanita, and some other genera.

It greatly assists in ecological studies to reveal in BLAST searches that the taxon is in a saprophytic genus, not an ectmycorrhizal genus.

I continue to think that scientific progress in practical fields is being held up by those who adhere to indefensible systematics on the one hand, and those who resist change for some ideal that is less than ideal in an increasingly technical world. I really wish that authorship could have been handed to the Amanitaceae experts which is why that offer was made well in advance of 2016.

It may never be over,
By: I. G. Safonov (IGSafonov)
2019-03-19 17:01:00 PDT (-0700)

but Cui et al. offer the most balanced empirically-derived taxonomic scheme to date that makes sense, all things considered. It gives an impression of factual progress and it also doesn’t expressly state the knowledge that came before it is inferior or wrong.
Yes, I read Rod’s comment regarding LSU in Amanita in obs 281952:
I distrust trees based on nrLSU. It tends to dominate tree building as seen in Ben Wolfe’s big tree. When the three other genes involved in the multigene tree were removed, the remaining one-gene nrLSU tree was the same as the multigene tree.”
My perception is the last sentence was worded ambiguously, as one can infer from it that the LSU tree is just as good as the multi-gene tree (same results) instead of LSU being the problem by virtue of overriding the other 3 genes. If LSU dominates tree-building in a bad way, perhaps a better way to prove it would be to compare the 4-gene tree (i.e., with LSU) with the 3-gene tree (w/o LSU).

By: I. G. Safonov (IGSafonov)
2019-03-19 14:40:10 PDT (-0700)

I did not make those conclusions, Cui et al. did. I just happen to accept them. :-) Yeah, I think the dataset is large enough overall, but omission of European and NA species detracts from the study somewhat IMO.
The support you are referring to (MLB = 77%) has to do with the monophyly of the saprobic amanitas (i.e., sect. Lepidella Corner & Bas). However, looks like these critters are true amanitas based on the evidence Cui et al. provide.

First, you have to decide at what rank you will treat this bunch of saprobic Amanitas,
By: Oluna & Adolf Ceska (
2019-03-18 21:53:13 PDT (-0700)

and then use the “preferred” name for that particular rank. The mushrooms themselves do not care how they are “named”.

MO naming is a hotchpotch mixture of taxonomy and nomenclature and you have to solve the question of “what you have” (taxonomy), before you select the “preferred” name (nomenclature).

But I am sounding like a broken record, if you know what that saying means.

The answer…
By: I. G. Safonov (IGSafonov)
2019-03-18 21:19:26 PDT (-0700)

to your original question: when saprobic amanitas are made part of Amanita, the MLB bootstrap support for the whole genus is 97%.

Just to be sure…
By: I. G. Safonov (IGSafonov)
2019-03-18 21:09:38 PDT (-0700)

The paper we are both referring to is Cui et al. It was published only a few months ago, so there is no way you could have posted in here “a couple of years ago”.

The “current” understanding…
By: I. G. Safonov (IGSafonov)
2019-03-18 20:10:15 PDT (-0700)

…is that Amanita must be kept intact, contrary to the positions maintained Vizzini (2012) and Redhead (2016). That’s the main point. The second point is that Lepidella sensu Bas is polyphyletic, as per the multi-locus study of Cui et al. Thus, the saprobic amanitas are housed in the basal clade of the genus, sect. Lepidella Corner and Bas of subgenus Lepidella Beauseigneur. All the other “classic” lepidellas now reside in three sections of subgenus Amanitina.

By: I. G. Safonov (IGSafonov)
2019-03-18 19:42:14 PDT (-0700)

The answer to your question is in the Cui et al. (2018) paper. If you don’t have the paper, see the taxonomic notes for the name Amanita sect. Lepidella Corner & Bas (1962):

by whom and why?
By: Debbie Viess (amanitarita)
2019-03-18 14:42:41 PDT (-0700)

it is still a valid genus on Index Fungorum, whether individuals wish to use it or not.

By: I. G. Safonov (IGSafonov)
2019-03-18 13:23:23 PDT (-0700)
yes Adolf
By: Debbie Viess (amanitarita)
2016-07-15 10:19:29 PDT (-0700)

I hear you. It was a general plea for civility and patience, not a specific one.

I happen to enjoy spirited and sometimes even fractious people, but that might just be me. ;)

How boring the world would be if we were all the same and always spoke politely, never saying what we really meant. Human interactions are messy, but that is what makes life interesting.

With some folks, there is very little ambiguity about what they think, and I count myself amongst them.

But I, perhaps like you too, Adolf, can be an acquired taste. Can’t please everyone, and really, why try to? Be true to yourself, and do the best work possible. No one is perfect.

Carry on, all. I have faith in my MO community, and I treasure my myco-colleagues, even if I don’t always agree with them!

To Debbie: I thought my message was cool
By: Oluna & Adolf Ceska (
2016-07-15 09:16:54 PDT (-0700)

I just wanted to suggest that the MO observation names should be kept synchronized with the names of the supporting voucher specimens. It should be left on the original MO users to change the MO observation names and keep them in tune with the names of the supporting specimens.

hot times, hot heads, cool ideas
By: Debbie Viess (amanitarita)
2016-07-15 08:20:39 PDT (-0700)

Hello All,
As difficult as it is for me to play Diplo-Deb, could we please just all back off of the trash talk?

The validity of or eventual acceptance of the Genus Saproamanita is still in discussion. Let’s allow that discussion to proceed. The MSA meeting is next month; I assure you that this will get discussed, at the highest levels, by those who best know how to make it work for all.

Currently, IF does list Saproamanita as the preferred name for these saprobic former amanita species. Can we trust the professional mycologists to figure this one out? Do you think that Else and Scott and whomever else joins in this discussion next month can’t come to a reasonable agreement? And no latin name is set in stone, anyway. We constantly change our concepts of the mushrooms, even if the mushrooms themselves don’t change, or at least, they change slowly enough to make it seem that way.

Believe it or not, the mycological world doesn’t spin on an MO axis!

Time will tell, coupled with logic and collegial intercourse, to the best of our/their human ability. For some, this is a quite emotional topic. But logic not emotion should prevail.

As to Adolf’s statement … yes, the mushrooms do not care what you call them, and the ability to know what you have in hand rather than the current “most popular” name is really the crux of the matter.

Certainly the older one gets, the more that one sees the futility of certain arguments, and becomes annoyed by perceived wrongheadedness. This knowledge and larger perspective will eventually come to us all, god willing. But humans are flawed packages, one and all. We are not just hopefully logical brains, but personalities too. MO is a reflection of the entire human/fungal package. That makes it sometimes challenging (people being people, how ghastly!) but never boring.

We can have different opinions, but let’s leave the antagonism aside.

Or better yet, if you have a personal issue with another poster, take it off-site, and leave it there!

These are all good and talented people sometimes showing their worst sides. Let’s be better than this.

Viess out.

To deprecate or not deprecate?
By: Oluna & Adolf Ceska (
2016-07-15 07:14:10 PDT (-0700)

The problem is that until we had started using MO, I did not know what the “deprecation” and “to deprecate” is. Try to find these terms in the Code of Nomenclature:
I am getting old and my command of English is getting worse and worse, and in addition of not knowing what the “Deprecation” is, I feel that the term “Deprecated Synonyms” is a double negative (or a pleonasm?) and the “Preferred Synonyms” might mean something like “Names In Current Use”.
Scott, you know Oluna and her collecting activities and her specimen documentation and you know the value of such documentation for the collections. MO would be an ideal tool for such documentation if it would deprecate naming by Consensus and then if it would deprecate the deprecation. At this point it is just a mycological version of a Ludo game.
This can be addressed quite quickly, if – FOR MO OBSERVATIONS WITH HERBARIUM SPECIMENS, *changing the MO observation name should be allowed only to the user who posted that observation.*

To Deprecate
By: S. Redhead (Scott)
2016-07-15 04:39:20 PDT (-0700)

There are currently more important things in the world than playing a game of accepting or deprecating a name. I find it ironic that MO Observer Byrain would think to lecture me on Coprinus. How many families did you say? Which ones? And into how many genera did species of Coprinus s.l. end up? You should get your facts straight before trying to use them in debates. If you read more widely, you would have known that 3 ended up in one family, and that was the point undoubtedly being made by Tulloss et al. And knowing this, their comment about perhaps the split (within the Psathyrellaceae) was premature, when taken into this suitable frame of reference, then begs the question, did they, every single one of the co-authors, really think that Coprinellus and Coprinopsis and Parasola should be lumped in with Psathyrella (1872)? And my point was, do we really want to go back in time that far in our molecular analyses? And if that as not their point, or if not all agreed, why was it even part of their argument that you believe is so articulate? I prefer to approach matters in science in an analytical manner using the best data available, and in the application of names following a taxonomic decision by objectively following prescribed rules used to settle debates.

By: Oluna & Adolf Ceska (
2016-07-14 19:03:11 PDT (-0700)

Re: 1. I care what we call the mushrooms as do countless other mycologists and even other biologists.
Re 2. If you want to troll try reddit.

By: Byrain
2016-07-14 18:44:39 PDT (-0700)

1. I care what we call the mushrooms as do countless other mycologists and even other biologists.
2. If you want to troll try reddit.

If you like splitting, split it, if you like lumping, lump it!
By: Oluna & Adolf Ceska (
2016-07-14 18:29:16 PDT (-0700)

Mushrooms don’t care how they are called.

Bad analogy.
By: Byrain
2016-07-14 17:41:42 PDT (-0700)

Scott, that analogy is invalid and does not work at all. Coprinus consisted of multiple families while Amanita does not.

I have read both papers, one does a great job of explaining why Amanita should not be split, yours hardly (If at all) explains why it should be split and does not address any of the great points in the new paper. Honestly you should go back to the drawing board.

Name pages of MO should be deprecated
By: Oluna & Adolf Ceska (
2016-07-14 17:32:23 PDT (-0700)

Mushroom Observer puts too much emphasis on “naming” and the Name pages are full of strange ideas. Mushrooms do not care how they are called. Replace the Name pages by the reference to Index/Species Fungorum and ask MO users to put more emphasis on the identification instead of just looking for the best “accepted” name. Once you have the mushroom identified, you can find the correct spelling in the I/S Fungorum, one which would fit best to your species or generic concept. Don’t mutilate the original ID by changing it to “the best fitting name”.

Please leave the genus name – the species can stay in Amanita for now
By: S. Redhead (Scott)
2016-07-14 14:50:57 PDT (-0700)

If you ignore contradictions in the paper it does sound pretty good. But then people said that about retaining other genera and the authors seem to question splitting Coprinus. A reply will await meetings at the Mycological Society of America.

By: Byrain
2016-07-14 13:02:48 PDT (-0700)

Well, the new paper is far more compelling…

here is Rod et al’s argument in full.
By: Debbie Viess (amanitarita)
2016-07-14 12:29:03 PDT (-0700)
following the Six Rules of Proposing New Genera.
By: Debbie Viess (amanitarita)
2016-06-08 09:33:33 PDT (-0700)

Dr. Vellinga linked to her position paper on this topic in answer to my question as to what specifically was her objection to the new genus Saproamanita. That paper appeared to be written and authored by many who share the concerns of too many “quicky” new genera. I agree with those criteria, and I am sure that Scott does, too!

Dr. Redhead clearly followed those six rules in his Saproamanita proposal, so a more cogent argument targeted to this particular topic needs to be made public aka published. And then, we can draw our conclusions!

In his paper, available in full in open access, Scott cited all of his worthy opponents in this nomenclatural battle, many times, and in gratitude. Let’s see those full arguments from Rod et al about why pulling out the saprobic, clearly genetically clustered members of the Amanitaceae into the new genera Saproamanita is not a valid proposal.

I look forward to reading those arguments in full.

By: S. Redhead (Scott)
2016-06-08 08:07:49 PDT (-0700)

MO will appreciate the fact that taxonomists may disagree on taxonomic concepts. Rod and I may never agree on generic concepts but that does not make this generic name a synonym under all circumstances. Currently Index Fungorum and Mycobank recognize the genus for the species included 1 week ago. For species concepts for Amanita and Saproamanita, I would certainly follow RET in 99% of the cases. The molecular evidence is available in the publication by Wolfe et al. (2012).

If we use that rationale
By: Rocky Houghtby
2016-06-02 07:29:57 PDT (-0700)

Armillaria and a dozen other genera should be split as well. I see the merit of considering ecological role in taxonomic placement, but I also see the merit in large cohesive genera. In this case, the lepidellas may sit far enough outside the evolutionary structure of Amanita for Saproamanita to stick around, right?

Number of users interested in this name: 0

Created: 2016-06-01 16:22:41 PDT (-0700) by Debbie Viess (amanitarita)
Last modified: 2020-05-26 06:47:35 PDT (-0700) by Joseph D. Cohen (Joe Cohen)
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