Free Images of Fabulous Fungi
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*** Warning ***
I wrestled with the option of whether or not to try to identify and place names to my fungus images. The study of fungi is done by specialists known as a "mycologists" who have many years of education and specialize in identification. There are many techniques used to identify a mushroom and it simply cannot be done by visual inspection alone. Incorrectly identifying a mushroom can have deadly consequences if eaten.
While I have tried to link images with fungus names, I am but a lay person and have used books and images to try to look up, categorize and name the species. My identification should in no way be relied upon and may be completely inaccurate!
There are many toxic mushroom "look-alikes" that resemble edible ones. You should UNDER NO CIRCUMSTANCES rely up on any of these images to identify edible, toxic or medicinal organisms/plants. Some mushrooms and fungi are DEADLY poisonous and their effects do not show up until it is too late to save yourself. YOU alone are responsible for properly identifying any mushrooms that you may be interested in. I have attached names to images which I merely THINK resemble the species.
I am grateful for corrections to taxonomic determinations, please contact me at FreeTiiuPix
The fungal order Agaricales is also known as "Gilled Mushrooms". All species in this order have gills that mycologists call "lamellae".
Gills are structures beneath a mushroom cap that look like rows of thin blades. It is in the gills that reproductive spores are produced.
Generally, gill fungi are separated into groupings according to their spore prints - Light-spored; Dark-spored; Brown-spored; and Pink-spored. The Light-spored gilled mushroom group is by far the largest.
image of mushroom gills (right)
You can make your own spore prints from fresh fungi specimens to help identify a species: Remove the stem from the cap and place it on a sheet of white paper. Some have suggested using a clear plastic sheet in case the spores turn out to be white! Cover the mushroom cap with a glass or cup and leave about 5 hours or overnight. By morning, lift the covering and mushroom cap and voila, you should have coloured spore print for examination.
Download image of mushroom spore print (below) at full-size resolution 3669 x 2752 here.
In addition to spore colour, identification also includes HOW the gills are attached, cap shapes and the mushroom's structure. One should keep in mind that a mushroom's appearance changes with time. A rounded immature cap may quickly grow wide and even become convex. Mushrooms that change colour depending upon moisture conditions are called "hygrophanous".
If you ever read a mycologist's description of a fruiting body, you may come across new terminology foreign to you. You can find a great reference source here to assist in recognizing gill attachment descriptions, etc.
Unidentified Gilled Mushrooms
Did you know....
There are several thousand species of Agaricales! No wonder I couldn't figure out what species the following are:
Note: The same mushroom or species is indicated by letter. For example, Gilled Mushroom A1 is the same species and photographed at the same time as A2, A3, and so on. Gilled Mushroom B1 would be a different species or specimen.
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