"Chanterelle look-alike????" (A. phalloides)

Basidium basidium at aol.com
Wed May 21 18:54:33 EST 1997

Jessie Micales <jmicales at facstaff.wisc.edu> wrote:

> According to Denis Benjamin's "Mushrooms: Poisons and Panaceas," 
> A. phalloides was probably introduced to the U.S. with nursery 
> stock in the 1920's to 1930's.  The first well-authenticated 
> identification was in 1967 in Maryland by FPL's own Hal Burdsall. 
> On the west coast, it has fruited in California for a number of 
> years (the book was published in 1995) and is gradually moving up 
> the coast to Oregon and Washington.  Then he says that a confirmed 
> identification was made in Washington State in 1965.  I wonder if 
> this is a typographical error, since it sounds from the rest of 
> the paragraph that it was introduced to the West Coast later than 
> this.  No reference was given.  

A. phalloides was apparently introduced in the Irondequoit area of Monroe
County, New York State, perhaps in the same era (1930s or so), also on
imported stock: in this case, Norway spruce was the imported host. It was
first identified in the 1970s by Fr. Wolfe and Dr. Leo Tanghe, has since
colonized native oaks in the area, and is expanding its discoverable range
every year. In October 1995, the area's first diagnosed human exposures
occurred among several Laotian immigrants.

There are collections labelled A. phalloides at NYBG and, I bet,
elsewhere, that far pre-date Hal Burdsall's 1967 Maryland collection,
though a critical review of the specimens is needed to eliminate
misidentified specimens of other taxa in section Phalloidae, i.e. A.
citrina and A. brunnescens, both of which have been and sometimes still
are apparently diagnosed as A. phalloides despite the lack of a true
saccate volva.

Now, a question from me: what is the systematic classification of the cork
trees that have been introduced to California?

(David W. Fischer)
Coauthor, "Edible Wild Mushrooms of North America" and "Mushrooms of Northeastern North America"

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