Friday, November 12, 2010

Muir Woods Fungi

More Fungus! This time found in Muir Woods, which doesn't dry up too quickly after a rain, making it an especially friendly place for fungi to live. Here we have some carbon antlers, baby sulfur tufts, unidentified yellow stringy coral fungus, a regular coral fungus, and some big, fresh oyster mushrooms.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Chicken Mushrooms

You don't really have to go far to find mushrooms—I saw these in Golden Gate park while playing disc golf. They look like golden pancakes, but they're chicken mushrooms, because apparently they taste like chicken.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

First Fungi

With the first rain of the season a few days earlier, it was time to go check out what fungi had bloomed. Hiking up Steep Ravine, I came across some fresh oyser mushrooms, turkey tail, and a real surprise: a brand new dye polypore at Pan Toll.

Amazingly, I also spotted an albino redwood, right beside the trail. These are redwoods that can't make clorophyll, but manage to get nutrients by stealing them from a neighborhood tree. The leaves of these parasites are often confused with dead, brown redwood needles unless you really pay attention. I must have walked past this one dozens of times during previous Steep Ravine hikes, but never noticed it before.

Finished hiking in time to catch the sunset at my favorite spot.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Wayward Newt

Just had the first rain of the season, setting in motion the cycle of life that begins with blooming fungi in Winter and ends with blooming wildflowers through Summer. The fungus is still sleeping, but this newt came out of hiding early to make his way up the mountain. These guys move slowly, but hardly any creature would dare prey on them as their skin is one of the most poisonous things found in nature.