Fungi season and New Zealand identification resources

Fungi season and New Zealand identification resources

It’s getting cooler and wetter – ideal for the emergence of many fungi.

This was brought home to me when I recently discovered an abundance of this distinctive little mushroom while holidaying near Rotorua.

Entoloma hochstetteri. Leon Perrie CC BY-NC. http://naturewatch.org.nz/observations/1397624
Entoloma hochstetteri. Leon Perrie CC BY
In places, I could barely step without squashing one of these blue beauties. Entoloma hochstetteri. Leon Perrie CC BY-NC. http://naturewatch.org.nz/observations/1397624
Entoloma hochstetteri. Leon Perrie CC BY

In places, I could barely step without squashing one of these blue beauties.

Entoloma hochstetteri is one of New Zealand’s more famous mushrooms, including being on the $50 banknote. Sourced from http://www.rbnz.govt.nz/news/2000/0088734.html
Image sourced from http://www.rbnz.govt.nz/news/2000/0088734.html

Entoloma hochstetteri is one of New Zealand’s more famous mushrooms, including being on the $50 banknote (below right of the kōkako).

New Zealand’s fungal collections and professional expertise are concentrated at the Auckland campus of Landcare Research, the New Zealand Fungarium (PDD) Te Kohinga Hekaheka o Aotearoa.

Te Papa has no fungal expertise or collections (except for lichens, which are a fungus in a symbiotic partnership with an alga and/or cyanobacterium). Some of Te Papa’s collection of lichens.

Online guides to New Zealand fungi

  • Landcare Research’s Fungal Guide and Virtual Mycota.
  • Fungi of Kaimai Bush, with many photos by Shirley Kerr.
  • Hidden Forest, again with many photos of fungi.
  • One way to get help with identifying a fungus is to upload a photo to the citizen science website iNaturalist. This also has the advantage that your observation becomes data for future research.
  • If you’d like to learn more about New Zealand fungi, check out the Fungal Network of New Zealand. Amongst its activities is an annual fieldtrip focused on finding and identifying fungi.

6 Comments

    1. Author

      Thanks for the link to the Stuff article.
      It states that, at that time, the edibility and toxicity was unknown. I advise not eating these mushrooms until they are proven safe.

  1. Pretty indeed! I have never seen one and it’s very cool to know it’s on the $50 bill (which I seen very little of as well). hihihihi!

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