Field Guide to Mushrooms of Western North America

Field Guide to Mushrooms of Western North America

R. Michael Davis
Robert Sommer
John A. Menge
Copyright Date: 2012
Edition: 1
Pages: 472
https://www.jstor.org/stable/10.1525/j.ctt1pn688
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  • Book Info
    Field Guide to Mushrooms of Western North America
    Book Description:

    California and the Western States are rich in abundant and diverse species of mushrooms. Amateur mushroom collectors and mycologists alike will find over 300 species of the region’s most common, distinctive, and ecologically important mushrooms profiled in this comprehensive field guide. It provides the most up-to-date science on the role of fungi in the natural world, methods to identify species, and locations of mushroom habitats. With excellent color illustrations showing top and side views of mushrooms of the Western States and a user-friendly text, it is informative but still light enough to be carried into the woods. When used to identify mushrooms, keys bring the reader to individual species, with a descriptive text providing cues for identifying additional species. Mushrooms common in urban landscapes are included, which is especially useful for the casual encounter with backyard fungi. The guide also provides a table of both old and new species names, and information on edibility and look-alikes, both dangerous and benign. A section on mushroom arts and crafts features mushroom photography, painting, philately, spore prints, dyes, and cultivation. The guide also offers a comprehensive list of resources including national field guides, general mushroom books and periodicals, club and society contact information, and web sites. · Primary descriptions and illustrations of 300 species of mushrooms plus text descriptions of many more. · Latest word in mushroom taxonomy and nomenclature. Clear discussion of DNA sequencing and new classifications. · Especially good coverage of southern California and Southwestern mushrooms often neglected in other field guides.

    eISBN: 978-0-520-95360-4
    Subjects: Botany & Plant Sciences

Table of Contents

  1. Front Matter
    (pp. i-vi)
  2. Table of Contents
    (pp. vii-viii)
  3. PREFACE
    (pp. ix-xi)
  4. INTRODUCTION
    (pp. 1-43)

    Of the lower 48 states, those in the West have the most diverse landscape. Within their borders lie the tallest mountain (Mt. Whitney at 14,494 feet) and the lowest point (Death Valley at 282 feet below sea level). Rain forests, deserts, volcanoes, foothills, valleys, and thousands of miles of coastline create microclimates that affect the types of mushrooms found and when they appear. Fall and winter are the best seasons for mushroom hunting along the coast and in the foothills. Mushroom clubs in the Pacific Northwest and in northern California often schedule their coastal forays during October through January, months...

  5. CLASSIFICATION AND KEYS
    (pp. 45-63)

    The definition ofspeciesis a highly debated subject. One commonly used definition is “an aggregate of interbreeding individuals,” which in practice is difficult to determine in fungi. Today, the definition commonly includes a component that describes genetic isolation from other species. In addition, some mycologists insist that a definition of a fungus species include a description of a unique habitat or ecological role, which helps characterize the individuality of a species.

    Like other mushroom guides, this one organizes species by observable characteristics, such as the presence of platelike gills, pores, and spines. The convenience of gross morphology facilitates identification,...

  6. SPECIES DESCRIPTIONS
    • BASIDIOMYCETES
      (pp. 66-378)

      These are some of the best known and most dangerous mushrooms. They are medium to large, often colorful, and common in forests in the western United States. White spores, gills free or narrowly attached to the stalk, the presence of a universal veil, and mycorrhizal association with oaks, birches, and conifers are the principal field marks. The universal veil often leaves warts or patches of tissue on the cap surface and a volva at the base of the stalk. The volva may be collarlike, scaly, or saclike (attached just to the base of the stalk). A ring on the stalk...

    • ASCOMYCETES
      (pp. 379-407)

      FRUITING BODY: A stroma 2 to 5 cm in diameter or larger, up to 3 cm high, rounded but often flattened, tough and hard, surface black, dull or shiny, conspicuously warted, each wart containing embedded perithecia (tiny flasks where the spores are borne), surrounding each perithecial opening is a flat to sunken disklike area; the interior of the fruiting body is silky-lustrous with faint gray-brown concentric zones of radially arranged woody fibers, texture charcoal-like and brittle. SPORES: Brown, cylindrical, spindle shaped to curved and cucumber shaped. HABITAT: Scattered to clustered on the bark of fallen or standing hardwoods, especially oak....

    • SLIME MOLDS
      (pp. 408-411)

      FRUITING BODY: Cylindrical, erect, up to 6 mm tall, bright red or pink, containing persistent pink threads. STALK: Up to 2 mm long, reddish. SPORES: Bright red to reddish brown in mass, globose, minutely warty. HABITAT: Gregarious to crowded on decaying wood and plant debris; the plasmodium is white. EDIBILITY: Inedible.

      Like other slime molds, A. denudata creeps amoeba-like inside rotted wood in search of bacteria, protozoa, and other microscopic life that it engulfs. When it reproduces, it crawls to the surface of wood to produce a mass of fruiting bodies. After spore release, the persistent pink threads in the...

  7. FUNGAL ARTS AND CRAFTS
    (pp. 413-425)

    Why sketch or paint pictures of mushrooms when photography is quicker and easier, and a macro lens captures exceptional detail? Mushroomers sketch in order to see and to remember. Drawing captures the critical features of a thing, its purity and individuality, what sets it apart from other things (pp. 424–425). With photography, there is the risk of paying more attention to technology than to what you see. To paraphrase John Norwich in his book Venice in Old Photographs, “In an ideal world it would surely be illegal to photograph anything without having looked at it for at least five...

  8. APPENDIX 1. SPORE COLORS OF SOME COMMON GILLED MUSHROOM GENERA
    (pp. 426-427)
  9. APPENDIX 2. SYNONYMS, NAME CHANGES, AND MISAPPLIED NAMES
    (pp. 428-432)
  10. GLOSSARY
    (pp. 433-438)
  11. RESOURCES
    (pp. 439-441)
  12. ADDITIONAL CAPTIONS
    (pp. 442-442)
  13. ACKNOWLEDGMENTS AND ART CREDITS
    (pp. 443-444)
  14. INDEX
    (pp. 445-458)
  15. Back Matter
    (pp. 459-460)