Observation 20614: Gyromitra esculenta (Pers.) Fr.

When: 2009-04-25

Collection location: Forest near Elgin St., Pembroke, Ontario, Canada [Click for map]

Who: Paul Derbyshire (Twizzler)

No specimen available

Same location as obs. 10469 ( http://www.mushroomobserver.org/10469 ) but almost one year later. These were smaller, only a couple cm wide and tall. I suspect they grow gradually for several days up to two weeks. I will be returning to the area periodically to chart their growth.

The second photo on the page has very good quality. A few of the earlier side-on photos came out with the foreground subject out of focus, but another lorchel in focus instead, oddly enough.

The first seven photos are of a cluster of three. Eighth is of a single specimen near that cluster. The next three are of three separate specimens scattered about a few feet away from those four. All of those were taken on the 25th.

The next eight were taken on the 28th. The first two show the “group of three” — a bit larger and wrinklier than before. The next two show scattered other specimens. The following three shows a single golf-ball-sized specimen, first whole then uprooted and then sliced in half. Then a similar-sized specimen taken from ground-level.

The next two photos were taken on May 5. They are both of one of the same three the first few photos show. It has grown larger than on April 25 and is wrinklier. At this time the other two were damaged, uprooted and shriveled up from subsequent dry weather. People ride bikes through this area, and it was probably a bike’s wheels that did the damage. Next three photos are of the same one on May 11. It’s the same mushroom as in photo 2 — compare the shapes. But it’s larger and more wrinkled.

The next three are also from May 11 and are outlying ones. Each was solitary and successively further from the main area of false morels. The first of these three was growing out of the side of a hillock.

Next two are from May 21 and show one near that original group of three. It’s the last one standing that isn’t a disintegrating mess, so far as I can tell. First of the two is mainly natural light, second mainly flash.

This specimen looks enough unlike some of the others, more folded and crumpled than brainlike, that I’m not sure there aren’t two species here (perhaps G. brunnea or G. infula alongside G. esculenta). This “pit” area is now also fruiting Galerina and Morchella, and is the first place I’ve found this year fruiting at least three species simultaneously a hop, skip, and a jump from one another.

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Add Comment
By: Paul Derbyshire (Twizzler)
2009-05-25 16:51:31 PDT (-0700)

43217 is three of them close together, photographed from above. Everything in this observation was shot within a 20m-or-so radius circle.

I have my doubts about splendida
By: Irene Andersson (irenea)
2009-05-25 12:58:00 PDT (-0700)

With the minor difference in spore size (only slightly larger) vs longipes, I (and many others) have doubts about splendida. But img 42334-37 are interesting, looking a bit like what newly was found in my neighbourhood (smallish, with a free “cap” margin, and a slightly scurfy stem):
These seemed to have the right kind of spores for longipes with thick-walled ends, unfortunately not mature enough to tell the right size..

Taking a closer look, img 43217 looks a bit odd too, reminding of what we call Discina fastigiata. I suppose that species is close to the american Gyromitra/Discina brunnea. I wonder what you might have there in Ontario..

The only thing I can tell for sure, is that there is no G. infula in your pictures. It is an autumn species, easily confused with G. ambigua when the time comes.

By: Paul Derbyshire (Twizzler)
2009-05-25 12:09:18 PDT (-0700)

Same as G. longipes however: G. splendida has some references on the web, but none at the majors (MushroomExpert, Roger’s Mushrooms, Wikipedia, etc.) and no images.

Without images it is difficult to make a comparison.

Most of the mushrooms in this observation are, as you said, fairly clearly G. esculenta as that species is currently understood. A few, particularly the one in the last two photographs, have more of the “gabled” look associated with G. brunnea, G. infula, and some other species, and with Helvella.

A key to eastern Ontario Gyromitra, including G. longipes and G. splendida, would be useful, if you know of one that is readily accessible.

Should have been Gyromitra splendida
By: Irene Andersson (irenea)
2009-05-25 09:39:53 PDT (-0700)
- not splendens, sry..
Difficult on field characters
By: Irene Andersson (irenea)
2009-05-25 09:33:31 PDT (-0700)

I would have called these esculenta without hesitation (probably not brunnea, definitely not infula), if I hadn’t recently heard of Gyromitra longipes and splendens as possibly misidentified species.
Here are a couple of keys, leading to sections of and around Gyromitra and species in section Gyromitra:

I wish I knew what splendens looks like, haven’t been able to find pictures of it.

Never heard of ’em
By: Paul Derbyshire (Twizzler)
2009-05-24 19:21:05 PDT (-0700)

Not only aren’t they in my dog-eared copy of Lincoff, according to Google G. splendens doesn’t even exist. The only hit is for your comment to this observation! There are more page hits for G. longipes but no image hits, and the only Wikipedia link is to G. esculenta on the Dutch version. I can’t find any photo-accompanied English-language documentation of G. longipes anywhere on the web.

My guess is that they’re so far mainly referenced in speech and in expensive academic journals. (It’s high time the Internet got around to doing to those what it did to the recording industry if you ask me — science is supposed to be an open process, with intellect and, sometimes, lab equipment costs the barriers to entry, not some artificial costs created by a creaking old monopoly.)

In any event, any pointers on how to distinguish those from each other and G. esculenta on the basis of field characters?

By: Irene Andersson (irenea)
2009-05-24 13:05:25 PDT (-0700)

Don’t forget Gyromitra splendens and Gyromitra longipes (can appear at the same time and in the same habitat as esculenta) :-)

Created: 2009-04-26 10:41:22 PDT (-0700)
Last modified: 2009-04-26 10:41:22 PDT (-0700)
Viewed: 685 times, last viewed: 2018-09-08 19:11:42 PDT (-0700)
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