Observation 24557: Otidea (Pers.) Bonord.

When: 2009-08-19

Collection location: Burmis, Alberta, Canada [Click for map]

Who: Johannes Harnisch (Johann Harnisch)

No specimen available

Species Lists



Proposed Names

55% (4)
Recognized by sight: ear-shaped habit (pic.2), and split cup margin (pic.1)

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Eye3 = Observer’s choice
Eyes3 = Current consensus


Add Comment
It does.
By: Daniel B. Wheeler (Tuberale)
2009-08-26 12:47:11 PDT (-0700)

Base on the 2nd and 4th pictures, am withdrawing identification of Helvella.

By: Johannes Harnisch (Johann Harnisch)
2009-08-26 11:18:49 PDT (-0700)

the last pic help

By: Johannes Harnisch (Johann Harnisch)
2009-08-21 07:49:28 PDT (-0700)

I was not a bit surprised when some one proposed Helvella…..

Description of Helvella crassitunicata
By: Irene Andersson (irenea)
2009-08-20 23:51:59 PDT (-0700)

“Helvella crassitunicata is characterized by a subsessile to short stipitate, apotheciate sporocarp. The apothecium is bowl-shaped, with a brown to gray-brown hymenium and abhymenial surface. The abhymenial surface is ridged and becomes paler toward the base, the ridges do not extend to the apothecium margin. The spores are 23-26 µm long. Helvella leucomelaena (Pers.) Nannf. in Lundell & Nannf. differs in having ascospores 20-23 (-25) x 10.5-14 µm, thin-walled paraphyses, and in fruiting in the spring to early summer. It appears to be associated with Pinus. Among the Helvella taxa with cup-shaped apothecia known from the FEMAT area, H. crassitunicata differs from H. acetabulum (L. : Fr.) Quél., and H. griseoalba N.S. Weber by lacking distinct, sharp-edged ribs on the abhymenial surface of the apothecium, from H. solitaria (P. Karst.) P. Karst. (H. queletii Bres. of many publications) in lacking sharp edged ribs on a distinct stalk. All of the above taxa have asci with two scars at the base. Helvella crassitunicata most closely resembles H. leucomelaena, sharing with it the subsessile to indistinctly stipitate form and asci that have a simple base with a single basal scar.

Fruiting bodies subsessile to short stipitate, apotheciate, ca. 20-30 mm tall. Apothecia bowl-shaped when young spreading in age, regular from above to slightly compressed, to 40 mm in diameter at maturity. Hymenial surface some shade of brown to grayish brown. Abhymenial surface concolorous with hymenial surface near margin, paler toward the base, lacking extensive ridges. Base to 20 mm long, consisting of rounded ribs resembling soft folds, ivory to off-white. Ascospores 23-28 (-30) x 13-15 µm, in outline in equatorial view resembling a race track or capsule (sides subparallel, ends broadly rounded), containing one large guttule with or without several smaller ones at each end, smooth. Asci operculate, non-amyloid, 8-spored, with a single basal scar (simple base). Paraphyses straight, narrowly clavate, by maturity at least some with distinctly thickened walls."
(from http://www.blm.gov/... )

I can’t see anything in the macro descriptions matching this obs. I haven’t been able to find any pictures of it, only seen it mentioned as a leucomelaena look-alike – and this does not look like leucomelaena at all.
Now, I’m ruling out Wynnella because it’s supposed to have a blood red hymenium..

By: Daniel B. Wheeler (Tuberale)
2009-08-20 19:57:47 PDT (-0700)

I stand, humbled. Can you believe I used to be a proof-reader? Would you believe …

By: Debbie Viess (amanitarita)
2009-08-20 14:12:56 PDT (-0700)

is not spelled like the borealis.

If H. crassitunicata
By: Daniel B. Wheeler (Tuberale)
2009-08-20 13:46:58 PDT (-0700)

then according to Aurora, "the stalk is sometimes so short as to be non-existent, in which case the base of the bowl appears “gathered” (folded or ribbed), which certainly seems to fit the middle photo. Also, H. crassitunicaa is grouped with H. leucomelaena which often has a white foot/stipe/base, which can be seen somewhat in the middle photo as well. Helvella solitaria is also included with the group, but has a more distinct stalk and usually develops above the ground. Since none of the photos shows a stalk, it may or may not be this species.

If Wynella silvicola (aka Otidea auricula) then should have spores 22-25 microns long. Most Otidea are yellow/orange colored. If Otidea alutacea, which is brown, then usually clustered, which I don’t see in the photos. Also the photos do not seem to show a consistent deep cleft in the cup, something that is nearly a characteristic of Otidea (imagine a in-rolled ear with a basal attachment). According to Aurora, O. smithii is described as deep reddish-brown to vinaceous-brown and fairly large (up to 8 cm high) with a thick stalklike base, fairly common under conifers in the Pacific Northwest and northern California. I have not seen it, and I live in Portland, Oregon. Nor do I see a thick, stalk-like base. The humus near the fungus appears to be spruce or true fir. In Alberta Canada, I would suspect spruce.

Finally in Helene M.E. Schalkwijk-Barendsen’s excellent Mushrooms of Northwest North America she shows Otidea onotica, which she names Donkey’s ears, a pretty good name in my opinion, as onotica means “of the donkey” in Greek. The solitary basal attachment would be near the base of the “ear”. This observation appears too cup-like to be Otidea in my opinion.

By: Irene Andersson (irenea)
2009-08-20 08:50:22 PDT (-0700)

if Wynnella silvicola matches what you see in the microscope:
Scroll down to another alternative too: Otidea smithii

I strongly doubt that this one with a split cup margin or ear-like is a Helvella.

what should i look for ?
By: Johannes Harnisch (Johann Harnisch)
2009-08-20 08:29:54 PDT (-0700)

under the microscope?

Created: 2009-08-19 18:52:47 PDT (-0700)
Last modified: 2010-06-28 07:07:57 PDT (-0700)
Viewed: 174 times, last viewed: 2018-06-08 11:38:29 PDT (-0700)
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