Identification: Creamy yellow/pink fingers

Discussion in 'Fungi, Lichens and Slime Molds' started by allennef, Aug 25, 2008.

  1. allennef

    allennef Member

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    These "fingers" seem to be growing on damp rotting wood that is covered with moss. The colour looks pink in the photos but is really more creamy yellowish. Is this a fungus or a lichen? Or perhaps a plant? It's about 2" high. Seen in a mixed forest area in Southern Ontario after a rather wet summer.
    Could this be a different version of the coral fungus?
     

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  2. allelopath

    allelopath Active Member 10 Years

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    The genus looks like Ramaria.
     
  3. C.Wick

    C.Wick Active Member

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  4. allennef

    allennef Member

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    The site you linked to said Ramaria araiospora is found on the West Coast and in the Pacific Northwest--and possibly elsewhere. Could Southern Ontario be considered as "elsewhere"? I'm a long way from the West Coast of anything!
    And this fungus was very creamy yellowish, not as pink/red as the link shows.
     
  5. C.Wick

    C.Wick Active Member

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    I'm not the greatest at this ID'ing thing....but maybe try Ramaria formosa...I can't seem to find a legitimate link to give you information on this possiblity? Maybe someone else on here can help better? They're definately lovely whatever they are called though! Good luck
     
  6. Frog

    Frog Rising Contributor Forums Moderator 10 Years

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    It's useful to remember that identification of most fungi requires more than a photo. Microscopy, spore printing, taste, texture, smell and other characters may be required to be sure you have the species right, sometimes the genus.

    I've been wanting to mention this in a few threads in the fungi forums recently, as perhaps some folks don't know this yet? I suppose most lifeform identification is like this, but I would say fungi is perhaps significantly more so.

    cheers,
    frog
     
  7. Daniel Mosquin

    Daniel Mosquin Paragon of Plants UBC Botanical Garden Forums Administrator Forums Moderator 10 Years

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    Would you be willing to write a brief summary about what's needed for fungus ID in a new thread, and I'll sticky it at the top of this forum?
     
  8. Frog

    Frog Rising Contributor Forums Moderator 10 Years

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    Let me give it a whirl and send it to you: One challenge is keeping it brief, as there are different considerations for different kinds of fungi. The other challenge is that some fungi ID's can't really be certain without having a captive mycologist chained to a microscope with the fresh specimen sitting in his/her hand <grin>. Or three mycologists to make a tie vote....
    :-)
    frog
     
  9. allennef

    allennef Member

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    I realise that much more than a photograph is needed to identify a fungus with certainty, however, that is all I could provide with this specimen. I know next to nothing about fungi or mushrooms, I'm simply a curious rambler with a muddy dog and a camera! I have to add that while taking these photos I was being ganged up on by a battalion of hungry mosquitoes so I didn't have much time to make any further observations. While searching the internet I came across Ramaria formosa var. concolor.... could be a possibility?
     
  10. Frog

    Frog Rising Contributor Forums Moderator 10 Years

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    Mosquito gangs are tough! I got roughed up a bit by them this summer also!

    I don't want to be discouraging, I do think we can ID a lot of things here with photos and descriptions, and learn from each other about fungi and how to get to know them better. Mostly I just wanted to make sure folks were generally aware that there are some limits to this kind of ID'ing.

    Re this: Recently, the University of B.C. Mycology dept. has been working on the Cortinarius genus: They've made some amazing discoveries about the diversity of species in this group in this region! And, interestingly, they've made some new identifications from DNA comparisons, IDs that did not come up from other identification methods used for this very challenging group of fungi.

    re: Ramaria formosa. I know so little about coral fungi - I look forward to knowing more someday, maybe I'll learn something new here!
    At least some coral fungi are mycorrhizal (I'm assuming some are not), so the fact that yours is growing on wood might mean it is a wood decayer rather than mycorrhizal, which should hopefully help the ID'ing. Ramarias tend to have a thick base as opposed to Clavarias, but that's a really general concept.

    cheers :-)
    frog
     
  11. allennef

    allennef Member

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    If I get the chance, I'll have another look at it.... if I can remember exactly where I found it.
    What special features should I look for?
     
  12. C.Wick

    C.Wick Active Member

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    I've been having an extremely hard time looking for any in Canada that color or design-wise fit this beautiful set. I always hate to ask if u could break a branch off to see if it's hollow or brittle.....but also to see if u can get a spore print by taking 2 small bits and laying one on black paper and the other on light/white paper (we'll keep this simple unless u have a resident mycologyst with a microscope :o)) so if it has a light color spore or dark it'll be noticible. If it's darkened/lightened too would be interesting to know? I've not seen anything online that has shown the lovely pink to gold coloration.......most have the red or dark pink tips instead when looking for any of the pink colorations unless they're practically GLOWING pink.
    see if the stem has gotten wider or taller? Corals from what i've read are not always the easiest to ID.
     
  13. allennef

    allennef Member

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    I went back for another look at this fungus. It's pliable and rubbery to touch, solid as opposed to hollow. It's growing on a tree stump, I think it's cedar. Very swampy damp area. The pink colour in the photos may be caused by the camera flash, as this time it looked more pale tan coloured. The third pic shows older specimens, they felt like dry grass... harder and more brittle, and more pointed. There were al lot of these "finger trees" on this stump but I didn't notice any anywhere else. I brought home some bits, I am doing spore prints on black and white paper.

    Next Day Update: spore print is bright ochre yellow.
     

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    Last edited: Aug 28, 2008

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