Does mushroom picking damage or encourage the Mycelium?
Richard W. Kerrigan
rwk at sylvanres.com
Tue Nov 21 12:54:06 EST 1995
In addition to picking (in the strict sense), one might consider other
related impacts (soil compaction, organic horizon displacement, etc.).
The matsutake research station I visited near Sonobe, Japan, restricted
foot traffic to well-defined paths which were minimally used. -- Rick
Lorelei Norvell (lorelei at TELEPORT.COM) wrote:
: On Sat, 11 Nov 1995, Marck D. Pearlstone wrote:
: > I have long believed that collecting the fruiting bodies of a fungus
: > would (for many species) encourage the mycelium to fruit more stringly
: > in future years.
: > Can anyone confirm or deny this scientifically speaking?
: There are numerous field studies attempting to ascertain the
: answer to this question. European studies -- particularly those in the
: Netherlands and Norway -- have investigated this, particularly with
: respect to forest management. Eef Arnolds has found that some
: ectomycorrhizal fungi appear to respond beneficially to a MODERATE amount
: of disturbance. In Switzerland, Egli, Ayer & Chatelain have monitored an
: area since 1976 and found that there seems to be no deleterious response
: to mushroom harvesting with respect to future productivity.
: In Oregon the Oregon Mycological Society has been investigating
: whether picking chanterelles has any effect on future productivity -- our
: study was begun in 1986 (with three years for procurement of baseline
: data, and harvesting begun on the experimental plots -- and no harvesting
: on the control plots -- in 1989). Preliminary data indicate that there
: appears to be no deleterious effect on mushroom fruiting OVER THE SHORT
: TERM. We shall statistically analyze our data after we have obtained ten
: years of harvesting data. (The study will be discussed more fully in the
: 1995 issue of McIlvainea -- journal of the NOrth AMerican Mycological
: Association -- currently in press. The article will also contain full
: references of similar studies in Mexico and Europe).
: However, as you know, an ecosystem is a complicated entity, and
: the health of the whole must be considered as well. The variables
: accompanying any field study -- weather variability is a major problem --
: make interpretation of data extraordinarily complicated. But studies are
: underway attempting to answer the impact of harvesting on fungi
: throughout the world.
: Lorelei Norvell
Richard W. Kerrigan, Research Department, Sylvan Spawn Laboratory, Inc.
1163 Winfield Rd., Cabot, PA 16032 USA
e-mail: rwk at sylvanres.com phone: 412-352-1521 fax: 412-352-4062
"Success has a thousand parents; failure is an orphan"
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