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When: 2008-12-04

Collection location: Parque Nacional Huerquehue, Araucanía, Chile [Click for map]

Who: Jason Hollinger (jason)

No specimen available

Thought this was a gall or some time, until I found one on the ground and cut it open. Grows on burl-like growths on old Nothofagus trees in wet forest. Quite gooey gelatinous texture inside. The cups are strongly suggestive of Ascomycetes but I wonder if it´s some sort of bizarre rust maybe instead?

Species Lists


Proposed Names

-28% (4)
Recognized by sight: It’s an ascomycete in the Helotiales
67% (1)
Recognized by sight
75% (1)
Recognized by sight
Used references: Gamundí (1971)

Please login to propose your own names and vote on existing names.

= Observer’s choice
= Current consensus


Add Comment
By: Bea Wharton (Riverdweller)
2011-02-07 07:41:55 CST (-0500)

cool mushroom and discussion~!

I was in Chile…
By: Milo (Mycophiliac)
2011-02-07 06:21:32 CST (-0500)

about this time last year (in Patagonia) and saw these all around. When I asked about them the people I were with also called them Pan de Indio (Indian’s Bread) but said it was the fruit of the tree. I didn’t even realize they were fungi.

By: Danny Newman (myxomop)
2011-02-07 06:07:44 CST (-0500)

During the last 165 million years, South America was connected to the southern super continent known as Gondwanaland. As Gondwanaland began to break up, South America and Australia were bridged by Antarctica, providing a path for the dispersal of many organisms. Among these organisms were fungi in the genus Cyttaria, the “traveling fungi”, and their host, Nothofagus, the Southern Hemisphere Beech. This round tree gall fungus has coevolved with its host into two distinct phylogenetic clades, or groupings, since their biogeographic isolation by the separation of the southern continents. Today, Cyttaria gunnii and Cyttaria septentrionalis are endemic to parts of Australasia, while other species within the same genus, such as Cyttaria darwinii, are only found in South America. Cyttaria has also traveled to England, but only with the help of Charles Darwin during his exploration of South America! —R. Holbert

Sometimes called Pan de Indio as well, aka “Indian Bread.”

Different species in Chile
By: Jason Hollinger (jason)
2008-12-18 08:43:20 CST (-0500)

Locals call it Digüeñe, Lihueñe or Quideñe… google nor I have any idea how to translate those names! But apparently it, too, is edible (according to wikipedia it is “usually consumed fresh in salads or fried with scrambled eggs”). I like “beechball”. Muy gracioso nombre.

(Oh, and sorry, thank you, Darvin, for spotting it!)

No problem,
By: Michael W (Michael Wallace)
2008-12-15 18:40:33 CST (-0500)

I’d really love to try those, keep us informed if you have a chance to try them, do they use the common name beech strawberry there also?

By: Jason Hollinger (jason)
2008-12-15 12:47:02 CST (-0500)

Yes, that´s definitely the one! Next time I run low on food while hiking… Thanks for spotting that, Michael.

By: Michael W (Michael Wallace)
2008-12-15 00:30:56 CST (-0500)

That is a nice find, that species is also found in New Zealand on beech trees and is supposedly edible!
Chile must be a great place to visit.