Mushroom Walk at River Ridge Farm

Last Saturday's mushroom walk at River Ridge Farm was a great success! The weather was just perfect we had at least 16 participants. There was a lot of interest and excitement and the fungi were out in force. With the time we had; it was not possible to prepare a comprehensive species list. However, just in a quick run through I was able to ID 56 species from the walk. Not bad for a morning stroll through the forest!

 Photo Credit: Joan Sunday

Photo Credit: Joan Sunday

We started out the day, while everyone was arriving, by reviewing a selection of several species that I had previously collected and brought for demonstration. This gave everyone a chance to meet one another and familiarize themselves with a bit of the language of mycology. This turned out to be very helpful once we started collecting during our walk. There was at least some familiarity with how to look at fungi and some of the terminology.

Here are a few highlights and notable finds:  We did come across 3 different species of Amanitas, which made it possible to familiarize everyone with the characteristics the make up this genus.This is very important since some species of amanitas can be deadly poisonous!

We ran across a dozen species of Boletes; including the beautiful "Two Colored Bolete" B. bicolor and the blue staining Gyroporus cyanescens which stains dark blue immediately when it is handled.

There were 3 species of the highly sought after chanterelles; ie, the "Cinnabar Chanterelle"Cantherellus cinnabarinus, the "Horn of Plenty"Craterellus cornucopoides, and the "Golden Chanterelle"C. cibarius.

Other notable finds among the gilled mushrooms were many species of Russulas of many colors and Lactarius species that exude a type of "milk"when injured. There were several species of the colorful Entolomas, including the "Yellow Unicorn"E. murrayii and the "Salmon Witch's Hat"E salmoneum. We looked at many types of Polypores or "shelf fungi" such as the medicinal "Turkey Tails"Trametes versicolor and the "Cinnamon Polypore"Coltricia cinnamomea. An exciting find; growing from the base of a dead tree was Meripilus gigantea, which can grow to the size of several pounds. Higher up on the same tree were 2 specimens of the "Bearded Tooth"Hericium erinaeus, another highly regarded edible. Unfortunately,all we could do was look at them since they were way out of reach.

We were able to compare the edible and common "Gem-studded Puffball"Lycoperdon perlatum with the "Poison Pigskin" Puffball Schleroderma citrinum. Also, there were several different colorful species of the coral mushrooms including the "Golden Tuning Fork"Clavulinopsis fusiformis. One of the most exciting finds for me was a species of "Cup Fungus"called "Moose Antlers"or Wynnea americana. This is a very unusual looking fungus and fairly rare in our area.

We ended the day by going over to the picnic area and displaying our finds and having a discussion of each type; including toxicity/edibility, etc followed by a great picnic lunch and more mushroom talk. I believe a good time was had by all and a lot was learned and shared. There were several requests for a repeat sometime in the future.

- Ken Crouse

Mushroom Species List

River Ridge Farm


Gilled mushrooms:

Amanita vaginata – Grisette

A. flavaconia – Yellow Patches

A. ceceliae

Russula virescens – Green Russula

R. variata – Variable Russula

R. compacta – Firm Russula

R. rosacea – Rosy Russula

R. aeruginea – Green Quilt Russula

R. brevipes – Short­stalked White Russula

Lactarius croceus

L. peckii – Peck's Milky

L. rufus – Red­hot Milky

L. torminosus – Pink­fringed Milky

L. subpurpurea – Variegated Milky

Tricholoma sp.

Gymnopus dryophila – Oak Loving Collybia

Clitocybe clavipes – Club­shaped Clitocybe

Clitocybe gibba – Funnel Clitocybe

Hygrophoropsis aurantiaca­False Chanterelle

Hygrocybe coccinea­ Red Waxy­cap

Cantharellus cinnibarenis—Cinnabar Chanterelle

Cantharellus tubaeformis –Trumpet Chanterelle

Cantharellus cibarius ­­­ Golden Chanterelle

Craterellus cornucopioides – Horn of Plenty

Nolanea murrayii – Yellow Unicorn

Nolanea salmoneum­­ Salmon Unicorn

Marasmius siccus – Orange Pinwheel

Marasmius rotula – Pinwheel Marasmius

Marasmius nigripes­­ Black Foot

Poroid Fungi:

Boletus bicolor – Two­colored Bolete

B. subvelutipes – Red­mouthed Bolete

B. chrysenteron – Cracked Cap Bolete

B. ornatipes – Ornate­stalked Bolete

B. griseus

B. subglapripes

Gyroporous cyanescens­­ Bluing Bolete

Leccinus scabrum – Scaber Stalk

Suillus granulatus – Granular­stalked Suillus

Strobilomyces floccopus – Old Man of the Woods

Tylopilus felleus – Bitter Bolete

T. plumboviolaceus­­ Lilac­brown Bolete

Polypores/Shelf Fungi

Meripilus gigantea – Black­staining Polypore

Hericium erineus – Bearded Tooth

Trametes versicolor­­ Turkeytails

Stereum ostrya – False Turkeytails

Polyporus badius – Black­footed Polypore

Coltricia cinnamomea—Shiny Cinnamon Polypore


Lycoperdon perlatum – Gemstudded Puffball

Schleroderma citrinum – Poison Pigskin Puffball

Coral/Club Fungi:

Clavaridelphus trunca­Flat­topped Coral

Cordyceps militaris­­ Trooping Cordyceps

Clavulinopsis fusiformis­­ Spindle­shaped Yellow Coral

Tremellodendron pallidum­­ White Jelly­coral

Ramariopsis kunzeii – White Coral

Cup Fungi:

Wynnea americana­­ Moose Antlers

Peziza badio­confusa –Common Brown Cup

Peziza repanda – Recurved Cup

Parasitic Molds:

Hypmyces hyalinus – Amanita Mold

Hypomyces chrysospermus­ White Bolete Mold