Parasitic Fungi

Forming another category of macrofungi is the parasitic fungi. There are at least three common types of parasitic fungi in Arkansas. One kind is the fungi that are ingested by the larvae of certain insects and spiders, which subsequently form fruiting bodies by erupting through the bodies of their hosts. These are members of the genus Cordyceps, which also Forming another category of macrofungi is the parasitic fungi. There are at least three common types of parasitic fungi in Arkansas. One kind is the fungi that are ingested by the larvae of certain insects and spiders, which subsequently form fruiting bodies by erupting through the bodies of their hosts. These are members of the genus Cordyceps, which also parasitize false truffles. Another kind of parasitizing fungus is the kind often seen on fleshy mushrooms in the genera Boletus, Amanita, Lactarius and Russula. These parasitic fungi belong to the genus Hypomyces. The lobster mushroom, which is considered to be a good edible mushroom, is in reality an example of a parasitized mushroom – the host being a member of the genera Russula or Lactarius, and the parasitizing fungus is Hypomyces lactifluorum.
Wood decayers form the third kind of parasitic fungi. They usually are found on dead trees, but some have the ability to attack living trees. The honey mushroom (Armillaria mellea), which can invade living trees through their root systems, is an example of this kind of parasitic mushroom.

Arkansas is fortunate to have a long fruiting season for mushrooms and fungi which allow us to collect them for almost 10 months of the year. Usually February is the worst month to attempt to find fleshy fungi, although sometimes oyster mushrooms and jelly fungi may appear on trees after a rain only to freeze in place a day later. The Fall season produces the largest diversity of mushrooms and fungi, and summertime is the runner-up for the best time to collect mushrooms, but these seasons feature different kinds of mushrooms and fungi. Fleshy pored mushrooms (boletes) and chanterelles appear during the summer, whereas honey mushrooms, hedgehog mushrooms, lion’s manes fungi and a plethora of other mushrooms fruit in the fall.parasitize false truffles.

Another kind of parasitizing fungus is the kind often seen on fleshy mushrooms in the genera Boletus, Amanita, Lactarius and Russula. These parasitic fungi belong to the genus Hypomyces. The lobster mushroom, which is considered to be a good edible mushroom, is in reality an example of a parasitized mushroom – the host being a member of the genera Russula or Lactarius, and the parasitizing fungus is Hypomyces lactifluorum.

Wood decayers form the third kind of parasitic fungi. They usually are found on dead trees, but some have the ability to attack living trees. The honey mushroom (Armillaria mellea), which can invade living trees through their root systems, is an example of this kind of parasitic mushroom. 

Cordyceps militaris
(on insect pupae) 

Cordyceps militaris
Cordyceps ophioglossoides

Cordyceps ophioglossoides 

Hypomyces hyalinus
(on Amanita) 

Hypomyces hyalinus
Lobster Mushroom

Lobster Mushroom 

Lobster mushrooms

Lobster mushrooms
Honey Mushroom

Honey Mushroom (Armillaria mellea)
 

 
 
 
 
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