Identification: is this amanita muscaria?

Discussion in 'Fungi, Lichens and Slime Molds' started by carma, Sep 16, 2006.

  1. carma

    carma Member

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    hi, i just went on my first mushrooming expedition in the woods. ive been trying to figure if these are amanita muscaria. these were picked in western massachusetts under pines near a river. they had some dots on em earlier in the day.
     

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  2. allelopath

    allelopath Active Member 10 Years

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    A little difficult to tell from the photos, but looks like A. muscaria to me.
     
  3. MycoRob

    MycoRob Active Member

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    I know the eastern varieties of Amanita muscarias pretty well, and this doesn't look like one to me. It sure looks like an Amanita, but I cannot tell you the species.
     
  4. allelopath

    allelopath Active Member 10 Years

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    In that case, I will defer to MycoRob as I do not know eastern varieties.
     
  5. MycoRob

    MycoRob Active Member

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  6. carma

    carma Member

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    thanks

    ok,thanks for looking at my pictures. i took a few more, they are really cool looking. not sure what they could be, maybe amanita frostiana or formosa (or guessoni). was hoping to find if it was deadly or not. they were also a couple nearby with the same look except for yellow stems and yellow warts. i read up that some people eat the amanita muscaria, and that it tastes good. after cooking it really good the bad chemicals are supposed to go out of it, but im not too sure of it, but it stiil is interesting im pretty sure it is formosa not 100 percent
     

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    Last edited: Sep 17, 2006
  7. MycoRob

    MycoRob Active Member

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    I assure you that trying an Amanita species and hoping it is not poisionous/toxic is really not worth it. You have to be 100% sure in identification with any mushroom, but especially Amanitas. If you are even considering eating an Amanita, I reccomend, to everyone, not eating it until an expert has looked at it.

    As an aside, Amanita muscaria formosa, even with the toxins removed, is not worth the effort of preparring it.

    Have you considered whether you have A. flavoconia?

    Lastly, one of the best mushroom clubs in the country is in your state.

    http://www.bostonmycologicalclub.org/SiteIndex.html
     
  8. totempole

    totempole Member

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    Massachusetts Amanita muscaria: follow up

    Greetings, new here.

    I was searching for forums about amanita muscaria, and stumbled upon this one.

    I realize this thread is a couple of years old. However, your question is a good one and is deserving of a more certifiable answer.

    I live in western Massachusetts, in the Berkshires.

    Your mushrooms look exactly like some I have picked here, thinking they were amanita muscaria. On closer inspection of your photographs of the picked ones, one major characteristic troubles me by its apparent absence, and that is the ring around the stipe, which I don't see in your pic.

    update: April 8, 2008: It does look like an amanita frostian:
    http://pluto.njcc.com/~ret/amanita/species/frostian.html


    There is another species that looks similar, but is actually quite different in a number of ways, and it's called the amanita flavoconia, and here is its picture:

    http://www.outwardjourney.net/photo/data//502/unidentified_orange.jpg

    Yours were definitely not flavoconia.

    It is much smaller, has a yellow stipe, not a white one like muscaria, and yellow gills and spores, not pure white like muscaria. It is also a loner, and prefers deep and deciduous woods, whereas a. muscaria tends to grow in colonies, and at least prefers a sunnier area, often amid pine needles.


    Hope that helps.


     
    Last edited: Apr 8, 2008
  9. Frog

    Frog Rising Contributor Forums Moderator 10 Years

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    Regarding the thought of eating it, I echo the concerns mentioned about correct identification. If you cannot identify it for certain, it could turn out to be a toxic or deadly Amanita.
    If it is positively identified as A. muscaria, toxicity levels apparently can still be unpredictable.
    There is an interesting account of A. muscaria ingestion on page 7 of the Feb. 2007 SOMA newsletter: http://www.somamushrooms.org/news/somanews19_6.pdf
     
  10. totempole

    totempole Member

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    Indeed, the level of uncertainty presented with the mushrooms in the above photos is a good case in point. I'm sure there are amateur mycologists and mushroom pickers that could tell you, "they are a variety of a. muscaria," or, "they are different from a. muscaria," or, " they are edible" or "not edible." Yet, the question doesn't seem to have been resolved here, and it is a good question that shows there is a lot room for error, even with a species that is often said to be difficult to confuse with other, more toxic species.

    By the way, amanita muscaria are not a deadly species in less than heroic doses. I have ingested them numerous times for the purpose of experiencing its psycho-active effect. In fact, some people prepare them for culinary purposes, in such a way that the psycho-active ingredients are completely removed:

    http://www.williamrubel.com/mushrooms/amanita-muscaria
     
  11. Frog

    Frog Rising Contributor Forums Moderator 10 Years

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    Thank you - a very interesting link!
    I've been told stories by travelling mycologists of other countries where mushrooms like B. edulis are virtually ignored and trampled in the zeal to collect A. muscaria for food use.
    And yes clearly the preparation is different for food use than entheogen use.
    For now I think I'm happy just admiring it :-). A circle of these around a white birch tree by a brook on a sunny day is quite a vision!
     
  12. totempole

    totempole Member

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    That was an amazing report on amanita intoxication, thank you very much for that link.
     
  13. Mycos

    Mycos Active Member

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    Amanita?


    Yes, I've been looking at these various photos for the last couple days, and a simple A. muscaria v formosa ID doesn't sit comfortable with me either. It seems to have different characteristics from one photo to the next that shouldn't change as dramatically with maturity alone. All of which leaves me wishing for a sample and some reagents before coming down firmly with one of about 3 or 4 potentials I've got going here. ;-)
     
  14. carma

    carma Member

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    hello everyone. Forgotten about this issue with the amanita. totem pole, i saw you were from the berkshires and is nice meeting you. ended up throwing those mushrooms out but remember of a bigger light yellow kind and also the white ones later in the year.... will take some pics attached is from a walk in the woods a couple days ago, thanks
     

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  15. Mycos

    Mycos Active Member

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    Hi again! First thing that comes to mind when I look at these photos is, "Wow! What I'd give to be able to casually head out mushroom hunting down there". So much moisture, leaf litter, shade, trees for mycorrhizae....the works! Sitting here in the dry, BC Interior hasn't been very conducive overall for numbers or variety of species

    But back to your Amanita....I can't be sure if that bit of something very high up on the stipe is a partial veil or another drop of water making it bulge out ever so slightly. Would you happen to remember?
    Also, I get the sense that it's too big to consider A. gemmata for an ID. That strikes one off my list of hopefuls at least <g>.
     
  16. fish dr

    fish dr Active Member

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    I'll bet you have more to contribute in the Cactus forum, though!
     
  17. Frog

    Frog Rising Contributor Forums Moderator 10 Years

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    Hi Carma,
    Do you perhaps have a shot of the underside of the mushroom on the tree?
    cheers,
    frog
     
  18. Mycos

    Mycos Active Member

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    LOL. Witty! (not to mention some exceptionally "dry" humor, doncha know.. ;-) ).

    And speaking of Victoria (??? <g>), I see in the latest BEN that Dr. Ceska, Oluna, and a few others from that part of the world have started looking at the relationship between mushrooms and forestry's "indicator" plant species and what they in turn can tell us by looking at the BGC maps and the available data already known concerning their zones and subzones. I'd be very, very interested in looking at what they're finding since this is very similar to a study I proposed VMS take part in many years ago. It was tentatively accepted by the members who actually started taking notes on the plants and zones they were taking their trips into. Unfortunately, I guess due a lack of communication on my part (being up here in the Interior, as it were), they began listing data I could readily get by looking at the BGC maps and plant lists particular to the areas the field trips were in. What I really wanted was the nearest indicator plant species to each mushroom. From there I could begin looking at associated soils, humus forms, mycorrhizae, etc., searching for patterns.

    But in any case, they quickly gave up doing what the were...as they should have!....and so I'll take this opportunity to send belated apologies out to all those who may have made the effort only to hear nothing back from me once it went astray. The amount of data I could gather on my own was so limited that finding patterns across zones would have been wishful thinking -- at best. So I dropped the whole thing.

    But that's all history (hopefully! <g>). In the here-and-now, these studies (like that taking place on Observatory Hill?) fit so well into what I was earlier attempting to find out that I feel a renewed surge of interest in the subject.

    And on that score, I'd definitely like know - or even do - whatever I could to help sort through and make sense of the accumulated data. Do you happen to know who might be best to talk to about that?
     
  19. Frog

    Frog Rising Contributor Forums Moderator 10 Years

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    Hi Mycos,
    We had Oluna Ceska at the most recent VMS meeting giving a presentation on her Observatory Hill study - I think you would have enjoyed this.
    Is there still an Interior B.C. mycological club?
    -frog
     
  20. fish dr

    fish dr Active Member

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    Yes, the Ceskas are so awesome.
     
  21. Mycos

    Mycos Active Member

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    I'm sure I would have! As for whether there's an Interior club? Well, y'know... Either they're not very active, or I've been out of "action" even longer than I had feared because I didn't know there even was one! And the latter possibility seems the most likely given my propensity for not seeing what's right under my nose. A Lepiota at a thousand paces? No problem. But a Matsutake button under my heel? Forget about it!

    Ahhhh..The trials and tribulations of the confirmed mycophile, eh? LOL!

    Anyhow. I'll have to look into this Interior club because that would solve a couple of my problems right off the bat. Thanks <g>.
     

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